Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), who pleaded not guilty to federal bribery charges Wednesday, must turn over his personal passport as a condition for his release, multiple reports indicated following the senator’s arraignment in Manhattan.
The New Jersey Democrat will be allowed to keep his official passport to travel abroad while conducting business as a member of Congress, according to the reports by CNN, the Associated Press and Reuters.
Menendez has so far refused calls to resign from his Senate seat, though he did step down from his role as chairman of the powerful Senate Foreign Relations Committee after the charges were made public Friday.
Menendez on Wednesday pleaded not guilty to three charges he took luxurious bribes to help enrich three New Jersey businessmen and benefit Egypt’s government. His bond was set for $100,000.
Menendez was also ordered not to contact any co-defendants, other than his wife, or any Senate staffers who know about the facts of the case outside his lawyers’ presence, The Associated Press reported.
The New Jersey Democrat’s wife, Nadine, also faces three charges linked to the couple’s “corrupt relationship” with the businessmen, to which she entered a not guilty plea.
She was ordered to turn over her passport and given tighter restrictions on her travel, CNN reported. Nadine Menendez can travel to New Jersey, New York, Florida and D.C., but she must otherwise ask the court to travel. Her bond is set at $250,000.
The three businessmen — Wael “Will” Hana, Jose Uribe and Fred Daibe — also pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The three-count indictment was unsealed Friday in the Southern District of New York. It claims Menendez used his “power and influence” to benefit Egypt and the businessmen in exchange for cash, gold bars, a luxury vehicle and more.
The investigation into Menendez, his wife and the businessmen is “very much ongoing,” Damian Williams, U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, said last week.
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