A Florida doctor charged with corruption alongside New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez has been ordered to remain jailed while awaiting trial for alleged Medicare fraud.
Attorneys for 60-year-old Salomon Melgen said their client posed no risk of fleeing. But U.S. Magistrate Judge James Hopkins sided Friday with prosecutors who said the ophthalmologist’s extraordinary wealth gave him a chance to go anywhere in the world, particularly his native Dominican Republic, where he has close ties to government officials.
A 76-count indictment claims Melgen falsely diagnosed patients with eye conditions that allowed him to perform unnecessary and costly procedures. He has pleaded not guilty to those charges, as well as those in the separate New Jersey case, in which he’s accused of swapping donations and vacations for favors from Menendez.