U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez
(AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

The judge in the corruption trial of U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez, D-New Jersey, is expected to rule Monday on a defense motion for a mistrial.

Thursday’s mistrial motion was prompted by a ruling from U.S. District Judge William Walls that barred the defense from presenting testimony from Marc Elias, a Perkins Coie lawyer who represented Menendez in an ethics probe by the U.S. Senate before his indictment. Defense lawyers also cited several prior rulings by Walls limiting what evidence the defense could  present the jury to support the mistrial motion.

Marc Elias of Perkins Coie Marc Elias of Perkins Coie

Lawyers for Menendez and for co-defendant Salomon Melgen sought to present testimony from Elias on his representation of the senator in the 2012 inquiry, but a prosecutor objected, claiming Elias’ testimony would constitute hearsay because it would represent Menendez’s testimony to the Senate ethics committee.

Defense lawyers also cited Walls’ exclusion of testimony from another defense witness, Amy Bassano, an official in the Medicare program, and limits on the scope of testimony from Augustin Garcia, a Florida Democratic Party official who testified Thursday.

Elias has been in the spotlight recently because of reports he allegedly commissioned a report on behalf of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign that said Russia had learned of salacious allegations about Donald Trump.

Lawyers for Menendez and Melgen cited Walls’ frequent assertions that defense testimony cannot be brought before the jury because it’s cumulative or duplicative of other testimony.

“You didn’t preclude anyone [federal prosecutors] wanted to call. They called people that were completely irrelevant. We didn’t contest any of that. Witness after witness,” Melgen’s lawyer, Kirk Ogrosky of Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer in Washington, D.C., said to Walls.

This content has been archived. It is available through our partners, LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law.

To view this content, please continue to their sites.

Not a Lexis Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Not a Bloomberg Law Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law are third party online distributors of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law customers are able to access and use ALM's content, including content from the National Law Journal, The American Lawyer, Legaltech News, The New York Law Journal, and Corporate Counsel, as well as other sources of legal information.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]