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In Menendez Trial Cooperator Uribe Is Crossed on Defrauding Santander but not Strip Clubs

by Matthew Russell Lee

SDNY COURTHOUSE, June 11 – Amid reports of investigation against Sen. Robert Menendez for taking gold bars, Inner City Press' sources on September 21 it to expect on Friday, September 22 an appearance in Federal court in Manhattan by Menendez and his wife Nadine Arslanian. This scoop was true.

Later a superseder was unveiled, including charges of bribes to act for Qatar...

On April 11, 2024 after Nadine Menendez and then the government asked for delay, to July or undefined, Judge Stein severed her case and reaffirmed May 6, Inner City Press thread

On Sunday night April 14 the US wrote in again asking for a delay to July, six page letter on Patreon here.

But Judge Stein told the parties to confer and report by April 16 at 1 pm. Then he set an April 17 conference, which Inner City Press live tweeted and dubbed "Berate-gate," thread

On May 13, jury selection began - but did not finish. Abit later, Menendez got into an car with FOP NJ plates.

On May 14 jury selection continued but was not yet completed, from the ending, thread

Late on May 14, the US Attorney's Office filed opposition to slides the defense wants to use in its opening arguments, including quotes from Colin Powell and MLK, and when Nadine came into possession of gold - full letter on Patreon here

Inner City Press live tweeted jury selection and then opening arguments here, then filmed Bob's exit (he said he thought it went well and that his guy did great).

On May 21, the US Attorney's Office put on Wael Hana's lawyer, then a US State Department official working on Congressional approval (or holds) on arms transfer to Egypt, thread here.

On May 23, with the trial in haitus, docketed was Menendez' lawyers opposition to quashing his subpoena for Jose Uribe's attorney proffer and communications with SDNY prosecutors, filing on Patreon here

On May 29, Inner City Press live tweeted, omitting Morton's steakhouse but including this

On May 30, Menendez's lawyer's (long) cross, including this.

On May 31, starting 1 pm, the agent was cross examined, and then USDA Ted McKinney on direct, thread

  After the trial day, Inner City Press filed Menendez' walk to his Jersey-plated car; asked why he called McKinney he said, Wait for the cross [examination].

Nadine Menendez hired a new lawyer, who previously represented Sydney Powell among others. Then this: "ORDER as to Nadine Menendez: At the request of the defendant and with the consent of the government [Doc. No. 434], the status conference is adjourned from June 10 to June 12 at 5 :00 p.m.(Signed by Judge Sidney H. Stein on 6/3/2024)."

On June 4 Judge Stein dockted a partially redacted Order in which he denied Menendez's request that the prosecutors give him impeachment material about a Confidential Human Source they are not going to call as a witness - but Menendez said he will.

On June 5, Inner City Press live tweeted - and afterward asked Menendez a question. Thread.

On June 6, after more cross of Agent Graves, Gurbir Grewal testified, thread

On June 7, after an FBI fingerprint expert, cooperator Jose Uribe, Inner City Press live tweeted, thread

On June 10, Uribe finished his direct examination around 4 pm, then counsel for Hana, not yet Menendez, began cross examination, thread.

On June 11, Uribe was cross examined - though not on the "strip club issue" after which out on Worth Street Menendez decried Uribe's crimes. Thread:

Hana's lawyer: Isn't it true you didn't mention Mr. Hana mentioned Senator Menendez until many meetings into your cooperation with the government? Uribe: I don't have a recollection. Hana's lawyer: At the bar, there was no discussion with Hana about Part 1 & 2? No 

Hana's lawyer: Are you aware that Nadine referred Doug Anton to Hana as a possible lawyer for Elvis Parra, for $20,000 for probation, or $150,000 if it went to trial? Uribe: I had no knowledge. Hana's lawyer: Fair to say you lie a lot? Uribe: I have lied  

Hana's lawyer: You ripped off the SBA? Uribe: I used the wrong numbers. Hana's lawyer: Fake numbers, right? Uribe: To get the loan. Hana's lawyer: You are testifying to get a lower sentence, right? Uribe: Less than 95 years, I am hoping. Maybe no jail  Judge Stein: Let's break. [With jury out of room]

Hana's lawyer Lustberg: We want to cross him about a car crash and most about his failure to pay child support, given his claims of being a family man. He says the woman he didn't pay got into another relationship 

AUSA Richenthal: We don't want to put into the public record things we want out of it... What Mr. Lustberg just said is inaccurate, I'm not saying intentionally so. This is deeply personal.

Judge Stein: We're dancing around some things here 

Judge Stein: What about the strip clubs?

AUSA Richenthal: I'd ask Your Honor to be carefully how to describe the conduct -

Lustberg: I will too, it's in the papers, he's claimed to be a choirboy but this goes directly to morality.

Judge: You have a lot on him  Judge: The strip club, essentially irrelevant. The child support, on a 403 weighing, I'm going to exclude it too. It doesn't go to truthfulness. You've got so much to work with on the cross. So this falls into 403. It's prejudicial.   Judge: OK, now we'll break.

 Cross continues, by Hana's lawyer Hana's lawyer: After the prosecutors told you that you were the target of a tax investigation, you pled guilty saying you bribed Senator Menendez, right? Uribe: After I pled guilty I had to tell the truth.   [After lunch break]

Judge Stein: OK, Mr. Fee, try to avoid objections. Menendez' lawyer Fee: Read that, Mr. Uribe, and let me know when you're finished. Uribe: OK.

Fee: Ana was not in touch with your daughter Vanessa when she called you and said, I'm pregnant and I need a job. Yes.  Menendez's lawyer Fee: So you put her as head of the company you were illegally running? Uribe: Can I add to your question? Fee: No. Your son refused to run it -

Uribe: He went to Seattle... I use my family to have the opportunity to share my business, we share  Menendez's lawyer Fee: You used your nephew at Santander to commit wire fraud? Uribe: He was a salesman there Fee: Santander is an international bank, right? Uribe: I know it operates in the US. Fee: And you defrauded the SBA? Uribe: I used a fake tax return, yes 

Menendez's lawyer Fee: You remember Jose Suero & Hoboken 1st Class Corp - and taking premiums from them for three and a half years, right? Uribe: Yes Fee: Then one of his limos got into an accident, right? Uribe: I don't remember. Fee: Suero closed? A: He's in NJ  Menendez's lawyer Fee: After you got Nadine the car, she stopped answering you as quickly, right? Uribe: Yes.

Fee: You felt she was using you? Uribe: I never thought that. Fee: You never talked about the car with Senator Menendez? Uribe: I did not.  Menendez's lawyer Fee: Nadine never told you that she told Senator Menendez you paid for her car, did she? Uribe: She did not. Fee: You know Senator Menendez is an advocate for Latinos? Uribe: I do not follow Mr. Menendez, what he likes about his job.  Judge: We'll break here.

 They've back Menendez's lawyer Fee: You hosted a fundraiser for Senator Menendez, with nearly all Latino truckers? Uribe: Yes. Fee: And Senator Menendez asked the attendees to share with him their stories of any problems? Uribe: I don't remember that  Menendez's lawyer Fee: Here, his [then] staffer Samantha Maltzman texted you a story about Latino museum opening in DC after work by Senator Menendez? Uribe: I see that.

 Menendez's lawyer Fee: You never told Senator Menendez that you were operating without a license, did you? Uribe: I don't recall telling him that. Fee: Andy told you Doug Anton was crazy in love with Nadine? Uribe: Yes Judge: That's not for the truth, jurors 

Menendez's lawyer Fee: You claim the Senator called you from his office in DC and said That thing that you asked me, there is nothing there, you have your peace? Uribe: Yes. Fee: He didn't ask for a bribe, right? Uribe: No he did not.  Judge: We'll stop for the day here.

More on X for Subscribers here and Substack here

The case is US v. Menendez, et al., 23-cr-490 (Stein)

More on Substack here


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