Menendez, 69, was born in New York City to parents who had fled Fulgencio Batista's oppressive rule in Cuba.
When Sen. Bob Menendez was a young attorney and gave testimony in a corruption case in New Jersey against two mob leaders and local officials, he did so while wearing a bulletproof vest.
Menendez is currently facing new accusations of political corruption.
The powerful New Jersey Democrat was charged with corruption for the second time in eight years on Friday by a federal grand jury in New York.
Menendez and his wife, Nadine Arslanian Menendez, are suspected of taking kickbacks in the form of money, gold, and mortgage payments.
a Mercedes-Benz in a case where it is claimed that the senator used his influence in foreign affairs for personal gain.
In addition, three New Jersey businesses were accused of paying the couple lavish bribes in exchange for the senator representing them in negotiations.
Menendez referred to the accusations as unfounded smears.