Former Jerusalem mayor Uri Lupolianski was sentenced to six years in jail earlier this week in the Holyland corruption affair. However, unlike in the case of his predecessor Ehud Olmert, whose own six-year jail sentence has received strong public approbation, Lupolianski’s fate has elicited a great deal of sympathy from sources as diverse as his fellow haredim and leaders of secular and left-wing parties. Even now, six years after leaving the mayor’s office at Safra Square, Lupolianski is still widely liked among the public, and the reaction to his heavy verdict has largely been shock and regret.

Generally, his illness is the first reason cited by those who feel his fate is unduly harsh.

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