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In Menendez Trial Sister Calls Cash Cuban Thing as Katia Says Anton Destructive

by Matthew Russell Lee

SDNY COURTHOUSE, July 1 – 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

On June 12, after the end of Uribe (including drunk driving and the "little bell"), US Attorney of NJ Sellinger took the stand, thread.

On June 13, trial day - and next day - was canceled by Daibes calling in with COVID: thread.

And then, book: GOLD BAR BAR Menendez Trial I, on Amazon here.

On June 18, after Daibes' COVID, things resumed with Sellinger, followed by Matt Soliman.

On June 20, alongside an FBI agent summary witness, a prosecution office witness out of order, thread.

On June 24, Menendez's staffer Sarah Arkin took the stand, from the thread

On June 25, Sarah Arkin finished up, including about upcoming job at State Department. Then, a currency (and money laundering) expert from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. From the thread

On June 26, there testimony about currency, and then a jocular Armenian jeweler, from the thread

On June 27, the Senate Ethics Committee director, then a cell site expert, from the thread

On June 28, the last US witness, on Menendez's M&T account, and gold in Nadine's Chase Bank safety deposit box, thread

On July 1 the defense case began, his and Nadine's sisters amid a flurry of motions, thread:

[Before jury is brought in]

 Judge Stein: Where did you raise this objection? Assistant US Attorney: It's about DX 1591. Judge: Mr. Weitzman, what's the issue here? Menendez's lawyer Avi Weitzman: I'm only going to use it to refresh. Judge: OK. It's a banana. 

Judge: I'm told that the jury is here. How many do you have?

AUSA: Texts between Robert Mendenez and Nadine sister Katia. I think these sentences are hearsay, and the rest is not relevant. Judge: Let me look at it.  AUSA: In particular the references to "I can't believe her being with Doug Anton while she was with me."

Menendez's lawyer Adam Fee: It's state of mind during the time period Judge: .. it's verging on the soap opera but I'm going to allow it in. Bring the jury in  Jury entering! Judge Stein: Jurors, the defense is under no obligation to put on a case. But will there be one?

Menendez' lawyer Weitzman: The defense calls Caridad Gonzalez... Ms. Gonzalez: How do you know the defendant? Caridad: My baby brother. I am 80.  Menendez's lawyer Weitzman: Did you brother have cash in boxes? Caridad: Yes, in 100 dollar bills. He asked me to bring him $500. It's a Cuban thing.

Weitzman: Why do you say it is a Cuban thing? AUSA: Objection!

Judge: I'll allow it Caridad: In Cuba they took it  Menendez's lawyer Weitzman: When did your family come to the US - under Fidel Castro? Caridad: No... Batista. My father made bow ties. Weitzman: Why did your family leave? Caridad: Four police officers came to our house, the bow tie factory in the back  Caridad: Dad had cash stored in the bottom of his grandfather clock.

Menendez's lawyer Weitzman: Was Bob told about this? Caridad: Dad - sorry, I mean my father - told him about it. Weitzman: What assets was your family able to bring to the US? Caridad: None.  Menendez's lawyer Weitzman: Did there come a time that Bob ran for office? Caridad: Yes. Union City Board of Education, then Mayor, House of Representatives... After Senator Jon Corzine left office with six months to go, he appointed Bob. Then 18 years. 

Menendez's lawyer Weitzman: You must be very proud of your little brother. AUSA: Objection! Judge Stein: Sustained. The jury will disregard the comments of the lawyers. No matter how artful.

Weitzman: Do you live in a buildings owned by Bob. Caridad: Yes, as super  Menendez's lawyer Weitzman: Have you seen video of Bob and Nadine's wedding?

Caridad: Yes. I'm thinking of the name of the song... Judge: Not necessary. Weitzman: Was the Taj Mahal behind video you say? Caridad: Yes [ Menendez's lawyer Weitzman: Did there come a time Bob had a shoulder injury? Caridad: Yes. Weitzman: Do you know how?

AUSA: Objection!

Judge: I'll allow it. Caridad: On the train in Congress, rushing to a vote.  Menendez's lawyer Weitzman: Did other members of your family store cash? Caridad: Yes my aunt, in a TV... Weitzman: You saw cash in Bob's home? Caridad: Yes. Weitzman: Nothing further.  Cross examination.

AUSA Pomerantz: You refused to meet with the prosecutors? Caridad: I declined. AUSA: You're family left Cuba in 1951 - before Fidel Castro came to power, right? Caridad: Yes. 1958-9 AUSA: Your family wanted to return in '59? Caridad: Yes.  AUSA: Fair to say you love your brother? Caridad: I do. AUSA: No further questions. Judge: We'll break.

 They've back. Judge: Defense, put your next witness on the stand. It's Nadine's sister Katia Tabourian. Menendez's lawyer Fee: Was Nadine married before? Katia: Yes, for 15 years, from when she was 22. Fee: Did she work? Katia: No. She had two kids, grown up now 

Menendez's lawyer Fee: How did Nadine support herself after her first marriage? Katia: Alimony and child support. Our mother left us money. Fee: Did Nadine ask you to reach out to Bob? Katia: Yes. She told me they had

broken up, she wanted me to reach out to him  Judge: When was this? Katia: The night of the vote on the Senator's election, November 2018. My sister was in an unhealthy relationship, it created chaos in her relationship with the Senator. She was fed up. AUSA: Move to strike. Judge: I'll allow it 

Menendez's lawyer Fee: Have you ever seen the Senator ring a bell to summon Nadine? Katia: I've never seen a bell at 41 Jane Drive. Fee: Did Nadine tell you she and Bob used the "Find My Phone" feature? Katia: Yes. She was afraid of her previous relationship

 Menendez's lawyer Fee: Did Nadine lock her closet? Katia: Yes because she had a nanny who stole a lot from here... I have a safe in my home. AUSA: Objection! Judge: Sustained. Fee: What does Nadine keep in her safe? Katia: Money, cash, jewelry, gifts given to her 

Menendez's lawyer Fee: Have you see gold in there? Katia: Yes I have. I have these type of gold bars too- Judge: Ma'am, there's no question pending. Jury will disregard.

Fee: Where was this, that Senator Menendez's shirts were stored? Katia: In her daughter's room  Menendez's lawyer Fee: Is this a photo of Senator Menendez's office in 41 Jane Drive? [Video light-up ring, basketball on a shelf] Katia: Yes. Fee: And this things hanging down, what is it? Katia: It keeps the evil eye away.

 Judge: Where does her son live? Miami  Menendez's lawyer Fee: Did Nadine ask you to co-sign a loan? Katia: Yes, for her house. Fee: And her car? Katia: No. Fee: Where is your family from? Katia: Lebanon. Our mother lived in Cyprus. The grandparents came from Armenia.

 Katia: My sister Nadine got my grandmother's gold bars. Menendez's lawyer Fee: What does this say? Katia: It's for a British Bank of the Middle East safety deposit box, in the name of my father's rug or carpet business.  Cross examination. AUSA Pomerantz: You refused to speak to the prosecutors in this case? Katia: The FBI left me a voice mail. I did not return the call.

AUSA: The Lebanon safety deposit box, that was 48 years ago? Katia: It was.  AUSA: To be clear, Fred Daibes and Wael Hana are not members of your family? Katia: They are not. AUSA: And you have no idea if the serial numbers on the gold bars in 41 Jane Drive correspondent to gold of Mr. Daibes and Mr. Hana? Katia: No idea. 
AUSA: Nadine did not tell you that she she got dressed in 41 Jane Drive she made Robert Menendez leave the room? Katia: No. AUSA: You're not physically with your sister all the time? Judge: Sustained. It's self evident.  AUSA: You don't want to see your brother in law in trouble, do you? Katia: I don't. Judge: Let's break

With jury gone: Judge Stein: Who are the next defense witnesses? Menendez's lawyer: Mr. Richardson, Mr. Ganoway, a paralegal - and then our client, that's still under consideration

They've back

 Judge: Put the next defense witness on the stand. Russell Richardson, forensic accountant with Guidepost. Menendez's lawyer: Do you know at what hourly rate Guidepost bills for you? Richardson: I do not. Menendez's lawyer: Call up the summary chart  Menendez's lawyer: What is this transactionRichardson: A payment to American Express. Menendez's lawyer: And what's this? Richardson: An AmEx credit card statement for Robert Menendez.  Judge Stein has denounced the flurry of motions as the defense begins, calling it an abuse of the court system.

On Menendez,  flurry of motion has led to Tuesday without the jury, only a conference of the lawyers at 4 pm.

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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