Israel’s leaders and corruption allegations
March 5, 2019 - Israeli authorities have announced they will indict Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on bribery, fraud and breach of trust charges but Netanyahu labelled the move an opposition scheme intended to force him out of the running in the upcoming election on April 9.
Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit has announced his decision to consider indicting Netanyahu after two years of investigations into the three separate corruption allegations.
In “Case 1000” Netanyahu is suspected of wrongfully accepting 1 million shekels-worth of gifts (US$275,690), which prosecutors claim included cigars and champagne from two wealthy patrons, -- Israeli-born Hollywood film producer Arnon Milchan and Australian billionaire James Packer -- allegedly in exchange for political favours.
“Case 2000” alleges that Netanyahu negotiated a deal with the owner of Israel’s best-selling daily newspaper for better coverage in return for legislation that would slow growth of rival paper.
In “Case 4000” investigators claim Netanyahu assisted Bezeq Telecom Israel, the country’s leading telecommunications company, in a merger attempt in exchange for more favourable news coverage on the company’s news website Walla. Bezeq’s primary shareholder is his friend.