Israeli Police Call For Netanyahu to be Indicted

Katrina Barker
February 17, 2018

The Israeli police have formally presented their report on the investigations into two cases in which Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has allegedly committed crimes.

Police claim they have enough evidence that many of those who gave gifts - such as, financier Arnon Milchan, received favors in return from the Prime Minister - thus, constituting bribery.

While Israel's attorney general will review the evidence before deciding whether to indict - a process which is likely to take several months - many are wondering how the weight of the case may affect Netanyahu's political manoeuvrings at a particularly hard time, not just for the moribund Israeli-Palestinian peace process but the region more generally as Syria's war gets even more tangled. It is now up to the Attorney General to determine whether to press charges against him. A poll published on Wednesday showed nearly half of Israel's electorate believe the police rather than Netanyahu.

"We think the prime minister should immediately disqualify himself and resign", said Shlomit Bar, 63, a retired music teacher, according to Reuters.

Police racommandations to indict Prime Minister Netanyahu's were published on Tuesday, somewhat creating greater enthusiasm and expectation among those calling for the Prime Minister to resign.

Lapid, who also called on Netanyahu to step down, was finance minister at the time one of the allegations took place. In the other, Case 2000, Netanyahu is alleged to have conspired with Arnon Mozes, the owner of the Israeli daily Yediot Acharonot, to advance legislation hobbling the free and pro-Netanyahu tabloid Israel Hayom bankrolled by American billionaire Sheldon Adelson.

The police are saying there is evidence to prosecute Netanyahu on bribery, fraud and breach of trust charges. Netanyahu's Likud party tried to pass a law that would shield him from the recommendations by prohibiting police from making any recommendations.

Among those caught up in an even more explosive scandal, called Case 3,000, involving the $2 billion purchase of submarines and missile ships from a German supplier, are David Shimron, Netanyahu's personal lawyer and second cousin, and Yitzhak Molcho, a lawyer, friend and close adviser.

Milchan and Mozes also will be charged.

The statement was Mandelblit's first since police recommended filing criminal charges against Netanyahu on Tuesday.

"Reports that the United States discussed with Israel an annexation plan for the West Bank are false", the White House said.

"Of course, it would be hard for me to fill an indictment against any prime minister or any minister who is now serving".

Netanyahu, who has served more than a decade as prime minister in two stints, has accused the police and media of a witch hunt. "But I was raised to look for the truth, and I would have no problem if I had to indict the prime minister, or anyone else". During that meeting, Trump promised Netanyahu that the U.S. Embassy would move to Jerusalem and threatened to cut off all aid to the Palestinian Authority unless they agree to negotiations with Israel.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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