Sen. Bob Menendez Intern Was Illegal Alien Sex Offender

An intern working in the office of US Sen. Robert Menendez of New Jersey apparently turned out to be an illegal alien and a registered sex offender who is now facing a deportation order.

The intern was taken into custody by feds on December 6. According to AP, ICE officers knew about him for several months but higher-ups put the arrest on hold until after the November election:

“U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez employed as an unpaid intern in his Senate office an illegal immigrant who was a registered sex offender, now under arrest by immigration authorities, The Associated Press has learned. The Homeland Security Department instructed federal agents not to arrest him until after Election Day, a U.S. official involved in the case told the AP.

“Luis Abrahan Sanchez Zavaleta, an 18-year-old immigrant from Peru, was arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents in front of his home in New Jersey on Dec. 6, two federal officials said. Sanchez, who entered the country on a now-expired visitor visa from Peru, is facing deportation and remains in custody. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss details of Sanchez’s immigration case.”

Senator Menendez went on MSNBC to talk about his support for so-called comprehensive immigration reform on Tuesday, but in a surprise, anchor Tamron Hall actually posed some tough questions about the Sanchez case. Menendez indicated he had recently found out about the matter, and questioned the relevance to immigration reform.

Hall responded as follows:

“Obviously this ties into [immigration reform] because if you are fighting for immigration reform and there was an illegal immigrant working in your office unbeknownst to you or not, that does factor into your credibility in the conversation as well.”

Sen. Bob Menendez was easily re-elected in November despite a mini-scandal in which he allegedly partied with hookers in the Dominican Republic but afterwards refused to pay them.

Watch the MSNBC Tamron Hall interview with Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey about the intern arrest:

Do you think politics played a role in the timing of the arrest of the intern on immigration charges?

[Top image credit: lev radin /]