Foreign tycoons to be questioned in Leumi probe

By REBECCA ANNA STOIL
April 13, 2007 00:57

American businessman Daniel Abraham and Australian billionaire Frank Lowy are likely to be questioned soon regarding the criminal investigation into Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and what is now being called the "Bank Leumi Scandal." Those at the Israel Police's national headquarters, preoccupied with the investigation into Finance Minister Avraham Hirchson and the appointment of a new police chief, were surprised on Thursday when details of the Olmert investigation were reported in Yediot Aharonot. Police would not comment on the newspaper's claim that investigative teams were getting ready to travel overseas and question the two Jewish businessmen. But their testimony is certainly crucial to the case, which centers around alleged deals between the pair and Olmert when he was finance minister. In mid-January, police opened an investigation into allegations that the prime minister intervened in the government tender for sale of the controlling interest in Bank Leumi, on behalf of Abraham and Lowy, his friends and former business associates. The issue was first investigated by State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss a year earlier, with embattled Accountant-General Yaron Zelekha as the key witness.


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