Federal prosecutors have requested that a Manhattan court deny Sen. Bob Menendez’s motion to delay his corruption trial until after the June 4 primary in New Jersey.
According to US Attorney Damian Williams, the present timeline is “expedited, but acceptable,” as it puts the trial to begin on May 6, 2024.
Last week, Menendez and his co-defendants asked Judge Stein to delay the trial until early July, stating that the case was complicated and that the government’s revelations were “volume and time issues.”
Along with other businessmen Wael Hana, Jose Uribe, and Fred Daibes, 69-year-old Menendez and his wife Nadine are suspected of taking bribes totaling over $150,000 in gold bars and a convertible Mercedes-Benz. The Egyptian government has also accused him of being an agent. There is a possibility that the Democrat from New Jersey might spend 45 years in prison if found guilty. He believes he will be proven innocent and has pleaded not guilty.
Despite several pleas from Senate Democrats and New Jersey political figures, Menendez has been steadfast in his refusal to step down, even though he has not yet announced his plans for the next term. Rep. Andy Kim (D-NJ), a far leftist, would easily defeat Menendez in a hypothetical Democratic primary, according to polls. Along with Menendez, former first lady Tammy Murphy of New Jersey has declared her intention to run against him for the Senate.
Earlier this month, Menendez’s legal team said their client needs further time to prepare for trial. They cited the following reasons: the sheer volume of documents (over 6.7 million) that must be reviewed, the inherent complexity of the case, and the potential need to resolve problems of law that might need additional time for a decision.
The prosecution argued against the motion, claiming nothing had changed since they notified the defense attorneys when the trial date was scheduled for the autumn that the evidence they would present would be extensive. The quantity of evidence presented to defense attorneys by prosecutors was in line with what the government had anticipated would be presented at the trial, according to Stein’s ruling, which concurred with the prosecution.