Published On: Sun, May 29th, 2016

Police recommends indicting Sara Netanyahu for fraud

Israel Police has completed its investigation on allegations that the Prime Minister's wife used taxpayers' money for private purposes.

SARA-NETANYAHU Sara Netanyahu allegedly pocketed around 24,  000 shekels in refunds on deposit bottles.

Israel Police today announced that it had completed the investigation into the prime minister’s residence expenses in Jerusalem and Caesarea,  focusing on suspicions that the prime minister’s wife Sara Netanyahu, and parties in the Prime Minister’s Office had charged the public for private expenses.
In December 2015, the prime minister’s wife was questioned under caution – as someone who might be charged with a crime – by Israel Police’s Lahav 433, fraud investigation unit,  on a number of matters involving suspected crimes.
First issue related to refunds on deposit bottles. this issue first came to light in 2013 during former worker Mani Naftali’s lawsuit against the state and the Netanyahus. Naftali claimed that Sara Netanyahu allegedly pocketed around 24, 000 shekels in such refunds. Prime minister repaid the state 4, 000 shekels ($1, 050). 
Second is the employment of electrician Avi Fahima, a former Likud Central Committee member, who allegedly called to come to do work at the Netanyahus’ Caesarea private residence on Yom Kippur, when no one work.
Thierd, the case of garden furniture which purchased for the prime minister’s official residence in Jerusalem, but was transferred to thier private home in Caesarea, while the official residence was left with old furniture.

The police also have found an evidentiary basis for indictments against Ezra Seidoff, the deputy director general of the Prime Minister’s Office. In a statement released by the police it said:

“The national unit of the Israel Police has concluded its investigation of the Prime Minister’s Residences. The case began in February 2015 with the approval of the attorney general and the state prosecutor and focused on a number of issues in connection to which suspicion of the commission of criminal offenses arose, including fraudulent receipt, fraud and breach of trust, including addressing mutual accusations. At the conclusion all of the purported evidence, findings and insights gathered in the police investigation were provided to the Jerusalem district prosecutor–which was involved in the investigation—for its review and decision.”
The police statement was unusual practice of recommending indictments. Usually such statements note whether the findings are based on a suspicion that criminal offenses were committed or, alternatively, that police are recommending that indictments be filed. In this case, the names of the of the people who were investigated were not even mentioned.

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