Justice Department set to retry Sen. Robert Menendez

Attorney General

Robert Menendez

U.S. Senator Robert Menendez. lev radin / Shutterstock.com

The U.S. Department of Justice announced Friday that it will retry Robert Menendez, a U.S. senator from New Jersey accused of conspiracy, bribery and honest services fraud.

His first trial, in November, resulted in a mistrial after a Newark federal jury could not reach a verdict, the New York Times reports.

Menendez, a Democrat, is accused of doing favors for Dr. Salomon Melgen, a Florida eye doctor, according to the Times. Among favors that the government alleges were helping Melgen’s mistresses get visas and intervening in a multimillion-dollar Medicare dispute, The Hill reports. In exchange, according to the goverment, Menendez received gifts, political donations and rides on Melgen’s private plane.

The jury also failed to reach a verdict for Melgen, who will be retried as well, Politico reports. The two men were indicted in April 2015.

Menendez’s office released a statement about the retrial, according to Politico.

“We regret that the DOJ, after spending millions and millions of taxpayer dollars, and failing to prove a single allegation in a court of law, has decided to double down on an unjust prosecution,” it read. “Evidently, they did not hear the overwhelming voices of the New Jerseyans who served on the jury this fall. Senator Menendez fully intends to be vindicated—again.”

The first jury heard nine weeks of testimony, the New York Times reported in November. A juror told reporters that 10 out of 12 jurors in the case supported a not-guilty verdict for Menendez, according to the article.

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