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Court sets February date for first Liberman hearing
By YONAH JEREMY BOB
27/01/2013
Three judges to hear the case of ex-foreign minister Liberman next month; Weinstein: 3 judges required due to public interest.
 
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 judge.

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 trial.

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 dollars.

Liberman also helped Ben- Aryeh receive a promotion to a new ambassadorship as subsequent “payment” for the leak, the indictment alleged.
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