Biz Van Gelder, a member of Cozen O’Connor’s Criminal Defense & Internal Investigations Practice Group, discusses Senator Robert Menendez’s months-long bribery trial in The Washington Post. The trial ended in a mistrial after the jury was unable to reach a unanimous decision. Menendez was charged with 18 counts of alleged corruption after accepting gifts from Salomon Melgen, a doctor who is also on trial. Menendez’s lawyers asserted that the government was trying to criminalize a longtime friendship between the two men by deeming Menendez’s actions on behalf of Melgen as corrupt. Biz expects that Menendez will be retried and indicates that prosecutors “would rather lose than drop a case, so they’ll probably go back and streamline their case, and next time be a lot more precise and surgical in terms of evidence." She continues "Once you blur business with friendship, it’s very hard to ask the jury to untangle that...The jury is looking for a concrete quid pro quo, not just a plausible quid pro quo."
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