Court convicts Olmert in Talansky retrial

March 30, 2015 08:47

In a dramatic decision, the Jerusalem District Court convicted former prime minister Ehud Olmert in the Talansky retrial, reversing its earlier acquittal and giving his legacy yet another mortal blow following his prior conviction in the Holyland Affair.

The retrial involved the Jerusalem District Court’s three-judge panel of Jacob Zaban, Moshe Sobel and Rivkah Friedman-Feldman hearing new evidence based on recordings, a journal and testimony by former top Olmert aide-turned-state-witness Shula Zaken against Olmert, none of which was available for his original trial in which he was acquitted in July 2012.

The underlying allegations are that Olmert illegally received and concealed substantial funds in envelopes from New York businessman Morris Talansky in the late 1990s and the early 2000s, with the case itself dating back to 2008.

In late January, Olmert’s lawyers presented their closing statement, saying that “Shula Zaken had lied” repeatedly and that the court could not penalize him for deciding not to testify.

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