Menendez: looking forward to vindication

WASHINGTON -- New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez told reporters today he is looking forward to vindication from the courts as he faces accusations that he frequented prostitutes in the Dominican Republic.

Menendez spoke to reporters a day after an attorney released affidavits in which one of the women who claimed Menendez had paid for sex instead said the story was made up.

"I've always said that these are false, they're smears," Menendez, a Democrat, said, according to the AP. Menendez was referring to reports on a conservative Web site, The Daily Caller, that he paid prostitutes for sex in the Dominican Republic. "I look forward to seeing whatever the Dominican courts have that prove what I've said all along."

(The Washington Post has more details on the affidavit and the accuser's reversal here).

The affidavit was released by Vincio Castillo Seman, a Dominican lawyer, son of a Dominican presidential adviser, who has been accused of hosting events on his yacht in which Menendez used engaged with prostitutes, AP wrote. Castillo, like Menendez, has denied the claims. The prostitution claims were part of the questions surrounding Menendez’s relationship with South Florida eye doctor Salomon Melgen, a friend and major donor.

Menendez, who has received significant financial backing from Melgen, has intervened with federal officials in several instances to help the doctor. Menendez has defended his actions as appropriate.

Melgen has denied being involved in connecting Menendez to prostitutes.