ABC;s first mention of Sen. Bob Menendez’s underage prostitute sex scandal was due to the FBI raid, not the actual story of a Democrat being accused of having sex with underage prostitutes in the Dominican Republic.
Federal agents raided the West Palm Beach eye clinic of a longtime friend and political supporter of Sen. Robert Menendez earlier this week after a document shredding truck was observed at the building, following attempts by FBI agents to question Dr. Salomon Melgen about his relationship with the New Jersey Democrat, according to federal officials familiar with the investigation.
The execution of the search warrant was carried out by a federal health care task force, with agents from both the FBI and the federal Department of Health and Human Services Inspector General’s office, which had been investigating suspected Medicare fraud by Melgen’s clinics for more than a year, the sources told ABC News. The raid appeared unrelated to recent allegations regarding Menendez’s trips to Melgen’s home in the Dominican Republic.
An attorney for Dr. Melgen’s office told ABC News that “the government has not informed Dr. Melgen what concerns it may have. We are confident that Dr. Melgen has acted appropriately at all times. ”
A spokesperson for Sen. Menendez told ABC News Thursday that the Senator’s office was unaware of any FBI investigation or inquiries involving the Senator. The spokesperson confirmed the Senator was a longtime friend of Dr. Melgen and had recently reimbursed Melgen $58,000 for three trips on the doctor’s private jet to the Dominican Republic, following a complaint to the Senate Ethics Committee by a Samuel Thompson, a New Jersey state senator and chair of the Middlesex County Republican Organization, in November 2012, just days prior to Menendez’s reelection.