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realclearworld

With mysterious ‘tipsters’ and disappearing hookers, the Sen. Bob Menendez ‘scandal’ gets more interesting

As more information regarding the scandalous allegations made against Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) becomes available or not available, the whole "scandal" aspect of this story may be taking a turn. There is definitely a scandal going on, but just who are the real culprits and the subjects of the scandal?

Via the Miami Herald:

Following the trail of Sen. Robert Menendez scandal leads to dead end in Dominican Republic

http://media.miamiherald.com/smedia/2013/02/02/23/48/Eng6h.St.56.jpegSANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic -- The shadowy tipster who made explosive allegations involving U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez and underage prostitutes in the Dominican Republic named names. He gave descriptions of the women, and in some cases, phone numbers and addresses.

Despite those details, the women are nowhere to be found.

A week after the claims made headlines in the United States and on this Caribbean island, the alleged prostitutes have disappeared. An attorney who once represented two of the women said he hadn’t spoken to them in months, and then stopped returning phone calls himself. A two-bedroom apartment where some of the alleged liaisons took place is now vacant. Little remains here beyond hazy memories.

No concrete links have been made between Menendez and any prostitutes. Still, the allegations from the tipster, who identified himself as Peter Williams, were serious enough to launch an FBI probe. And shreds of evidence in Santo Domingo show that, at the very least, the women Williams described exist.

Take an apartment in Santo Domingo’s upscale Gazcue neighborhood that Williams said was used for sexual liaisons. In April emails to a watchdog group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, Williams alleged that Dr. Salomon Melgen, a friend and major campaign donor to Menendez, rented a unit for a Brazilian prostitute named Maria and a Colombian prostitute named Geraldine.

The apartment exists. When reached by phone, the landlady said that two young women named Geraldine and Maria had indeed lived there last year, and said the nationalities matched.

However, the landlady, who declined to be named, did not believe the women to be prostitutes — she said she thought they were beautiful foreign exchange students — and had never heard of Menendez or Melgen visiting the apartment. But she complained that the women had nearly destroyed the unit, even leaving the wallpaper torn up when they abandoned the apartment last year.

And from our friends at Capitol Hill Cubans, we see how the plot thickens:
Why "Peter Williams"?
Yesterday, we asked "Who is 'Peter Williams'?" -- referring to the unknown tipster responsible for a number of unsubstantiated allegations against U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ).We posed the concern:

Do we live in an irresponsible new world, where faceless, nameless, anonymous sources can drive mainstream media coverage?

Today, some news organizations -- after hitting a dead-end on these tips -- are finally recognizing that these allegations appear to stem from a political trickster.

Yet, all of these investigative journalists, have missed an obvious clue regarding the political motivations of "Mr. Williams."

Why the pseudonym "Peter Williams"?

Pete Williams, aka Harrison A. Williams, was a former U.S. Senator from New Jersey, who resigned from office in 1982, pursuant to the infamous Abscam scandal.

Looks like they mystery tipster, "Peter Williams," is someone with a keen knowledge of New Jersey politics.

And with a clear political objective in mind.

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