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Menendez Accuser Recants Prostitution Claims

The woman who claimed that she received money in exchange for sex from New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez has recanted her story:

An escort who appeared on a video claiming Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) paid her for sex has told Dominican Republic police that she was instead paid to make up the claims in a tape recording and has never met or seen the senator before, according to court documents and two people briefed on her claim.

The woman identified a lawyer who approached her and a friend to make the videotape, according to affidavits obtained by the Post. That man has in turn identified another lawyer who gave him a script for the tape and paid him to find women to fabricate the claims, the affidavits say.

The escort was one of two women who taped videos that seems to support a tipster’s allegations that Menendez had patronized prostitutes while vacationing in the Dominican Republic.

FBI agents conducting interviews in the Dominican Republic have found no evidence to back up the tipster’s allegations, according to two people briefed on their work.

There’s more to come from this, I would bet, including the identity of the two lawyers and who they might have been working for.

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. C. Clavin says:

    I don’t care about this much…but I’m waiting for folks like Septimius, who have been ranting about this, to admit they were WRONG.
    I’m also waiting for Kate Upton to visit me.
    I suspect I have a better chance with Kate.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 0

  2. @C. Clavin:

    The Septimii will no doubt say this only proves Menendez’s guilt as this woman has now obviously been paid off. Why would they need to bribe her to tell lies if there was nothing to the story?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  3. James H says:

    The woman identified a lawyer who approached her and a friend to make the videotape, according to affidavits obtained by the Post. That man has in turn identified another lawyer who gave him a script for the tape and paid him to find women to fabricate the claims, the affidavits say.

    See what happens when honest prostitutes start hanging out with lawyers?

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 0

  4. Andre Kenji says:

    Menendez is innocent of this charge, but there are all these improper financial dealings.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  5. mantis says:

    @James H:

    See what happens when honest prostitutes start hanging out with lawyers?

    FTW!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  6. al-Ameda says:

    America, land of liars.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  7. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    The Daily Caller says that the hooker the WaPo found was not one of the two they interviewed that implicated Menendez, and cites a few inconsistencies in the WaPo story that back up TheDC.

    TheDC might have gotten it wrong, but the WaPo hasn’t proven it based on this.

    And doesn’t this do wonders at covering up the other allegations of corruption against Menendez — the very, very cozy financial relationship with that doctor who made big bucks off money Menendez steered his way?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 10

  8. Andre Kenji says:

    Prostitutes don´t talk about their clients, prostitutes do not denounce their clients, specially when that could bring problems for them. Prostitutes are in fact normal women, specially when they are not working, and they don´t like that other people knows about their job. They know that their source of income requires discretion, and that many of their clients are married men. Many prostitutes could blackmail their clients, but they know that they could not do that without endangering their source of income.

    It´s entirely possible that Menendez met with prostitutes in the Dominican Republic. But I find difficult to believe that one of these prostitutes would talk – on video – about that. Menendez is a sleazy guy that at least should be stripped from the Chairmanship of the Foreign Affairs committee, but there is no proof that he met underage prostitutes. A video confession is a laughable evidence of that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3

  9. C. Clavin says:

    Thanks Jenos…for proving my point beyond a shadow of doubt.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  10. Rob in CT says:

    What Andre said. Get to the bottom of the $$ allegations. We have quite enough legalized bribery w/o allowing someone to get away with the illegal sort. [that sounds so effing weak, because it is. When it comes to $ in politics, I’m definitely at the point of “learned helplessness”).

    As for the pay-off to this prostitute for the video… I wouldn’t be the slighest bit surprised if the Daily Caller paid for it. We all know their ethical standards: they don’t have ’em.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  11. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Rob in CT: Because, of course, NJ Senators are always such upright, moral men, of course, and any accusations of wrongdoing — even as well-documented as Menendez’ financial games — are totally unfounded.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

  12. Septimius says:

    @C. Clavin:

    Is it bribery if you provide underage Dominican prosititutes to U.S. Senators?

    Oops, I forgot that we don’t talk about that around here. My bad.

    Apparently, in the left-wing fever swamp you live in, that constitutes a “rant.” My apologies.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  13. Paul L. says:

    @C. Clavin:
    I am still waiting for them “to admit they were WRONG.”
    After the NY Times debunked the falsehoods used to defend the Duke Lacrosse Rapists!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4

  14. wr says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: “Because, of course, NJ Senators are always such upright, moral men, of course, and any accusations of wrongdoing — even as well-documented as Menendez’ financial games — are totally unfounded. ”

    And because, of course, you have no history of accusing any Democrat of the worst possible crimes while ignoring any improprieties by members of your team, so when you level charges against a senator we all know you are simply seeking the truth.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  15. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @wr: And because, of course, you have no history of accusing any Democrat of the worst possible crimes while ignoring any improprieties by members of your team, so when you level charges against a senator we all know you are simply seeking the truth.

    You’re right, I don’t have such history. I don’t accuse, I simply comment that others do the accusing. And the WaPo has not disproven TheDC’s initial story.

    However, you have a lengthy history of being stupid, dishonest, stupid, delusional, and stupid.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 5

  16. wr says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: You don’t accuse, you don’t predict, you just offer your wisdom to the world. Just like when you used to breathlessly repeat every idiot birther story, then say you never believed them, but were doing us all the service of letting us know what was being said.

    You seem to think this buys you some kind of credibility, when it fact it just shows everyone that you believe in nothing other than annoying people.

    And in your inverted Jay Tea vision, everyone who is able to see through you is “stupid.” Which is undoubtedly why you work serving Slurpees in a 7-11 — because the world is too stupid to appreciate your genius.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  17. Andre Kenji says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    You’re right, I don’t have such history. I don’t accuse, I simply comment that others do the accusing. And the WaPo has not disproven TheDC’s initial story.

    No, in november both CNN and ABC News tried to follow up the story, and they did not find anything substantial to back up the claims. The story is not so credible, unless you are believing that not only a Latin American sex worker would uncover one of her clients but recognize Bob Menendez.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  18. C. Clavin says:

    @ Septimius…
    I notice you still haven’t copped to being…well..you know…WRONG.
    Thanks for proving my point.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  19. C. Clavin says:

    wr…
    No way Jenos…er…Indiana Jones can get hired to work at a 7.11….he/she would have to change out of his/her cheeto-stained onesy and leave his/her mothers basement.
    Not. Going. To. Happen. Ever.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  20. Rob in CT says:

    Because, of course, NJ Senators are always such upright, moral men, of course, and any accusations of wrongdoing — even as well-documented as Menendez’ financial games — are totally unfounded.

    What the f*ck are you talking about?

    I am fully in favor of investigating Menendez’s “financial games.” I want the investigation to go Roter Rooter on his ass. I think my comment is clear on this point. It begins with “what Andre said.” What did Andre say? He said this:

    Menendez is innocent of this charge, but there are all these improper financial dealings.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  21. wr says:

    @Rob in CT: Yes… but many of them are improper financial dealings according to the same accusers who paid hookers to lie. Sorry if my interest in the inquisition lessens when those making the charges turn out to be conspiring sleazebags.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  22. bill says:

    who cares, prostitutes are legal there- and should be here too. the alleged crimes against him will be bribery and such- not tapping barely legal ho’s. does everyone feel that much better about him now?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  23. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    It might be time for an update… the WaPo has quietly “redacted” its story.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  24. Wr says:

    I always wondered what kind of moron could fall for the crap Tucker Carlson prints in his fake news site. Now I know. Thanks.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  25. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    Now there’s even more need for an update. More recent developments:

    1) The Dominican prostitute the WaPo interviewed says she is 23; theDC’s prostitute stated her age as 24.
    2) The WaPo’s hooker never mentioned theDC in her affidavit.
    3) Tucker Carlson says he has an e-mail from the WaPo reporter asking for comment time-stamped 30 minutes after the WaPo’s story was posted — which included a line that Carlson didn’t respond to requests for comments.

    It seems that the WaPo found a Dominican hooker that had NOT serviced Menendez, and got her to go on the record as saying so.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  26. Andre Kenji says:

    http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/robert-menendez-prostitution-scandal-happened/story?id=18664472&nwltr=blotter_featureHed

    But during the ABC News interviews, none of the women could produce identity cards with their names, and they all provided the same story almost word for word, as if they had been coached.
    They were, according to a sworn affidavit filed in court this week by one of the three women, who says it was all a set up.

    In the affidavit, she said that she and the others were paid to use fake names and make up a story about sex with the Senator. A Dominican official familiar with the case confirmed that the woman in the affidavit, identified as Nexis de los Santos Santana, was the same woman who wore a yellow blouse when interviewed by ABC News.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  27. Andre Kenji says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: “It seems that the WaPo found a Dominican hooker that had NOT serviced Menendez, and got her to go on the record as saying so.”

    It seems that you did not note how ridiculous would be for Dominican hõoker to KNOW who the f* is Bob Menendez. I´ve heard about “political prostitutes”, but that´s ridiculous. Besides that, none of these women are underage, that´s easy to spot.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  28. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @Andre Kenji: Dominican hõoker

    I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed and appreciated your little accent mark in “hõoker.” It adds a certain something to the dialogue.

    But back to the main point: The WaPo’s “debunking” is sadly lacking, and — as others have noted — the real scandal here is Menendez’ financial dealings with Dr. Melgen. The question of whether or not Menendez’ “compensation” from Melgen involved Dominican hõokers of any age are just diversions.

    And for the remainder of this discussion, I’m going to keep that accent mark on “hõoker.” I really like it. Thanks.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0