Jerusalem District Court President Shlomit Dotan announced on Sunday that the
first hearing for Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman will be on February
17 at 2 p.m.
Three judges will hear the case instead of the one required
by law, following a request by Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein due to the
“public interest” relating to the matter.
In the event of an appeal, a
decision of three judges is harder to overturn than a decision by a single
The hearing will begin one of the most dramatic legal proceedings
in the country’s history, as Liberman, No. 2 on the Likud Beytenu joint Knesset
list, a former foreign minister and still a key national powerbroker, goes on
Liberman was indicted on December 27 for fraud and breach of
public trust relating to the Belarusian Ambassador Affair. He denies all of the
allegations against him.
The indictment said that the Yisrael Beytenu
head failed to report an illegal leak by former Belarusian ambassador Ze’ev
Ben-Aryeh regarding an investigation against Liberman for laundering millions of
Liberman also helped Ben- Aryeh receive a promotion to a new
ambassadorship as subsequent “payment” for the leak, the indictment alleged.