Shula Zaken, a former top aide to ex-prime minister Ehud Olmert, was
hospitalized on Wednesday night, on the eve of her cross-examination in the
Following her hospitalization, the court postponed
The drama built on Tuesday’s tension in which
Zaken’s lawyer, Ofer Bartal, suddenly requested a “time-out” in her testimony in
the Tel Aviv District Court after she apparently contradicted a pre-agreed upon
narrative they had discussed and possibly admitted to aspects of the bribery
crimes for which she is charged.
Zaken is charged with receiving bribes
from main state witness Shmuel Duchner, personally, as well as by request of
Olmert in exchange for Olmert smoothing over legal and zoning obstacles for the
Holyland real estate project in south Jerusalem. Olmert is charged with
receiving NIS 1.5 million in bribes from Duchner, mostly as mayor of Jerusalem
from 1993 to 1999, but also afterward as a cabinet minister.
hospitalized after testifying in a tense hearing about her romantic relationship
with Duchner, who himself was hospitalized throughout earlier stages of the
trial and who died mid-trial in March. Zaken’s cross-examination could be
crucial for her and Olmert’s fate in the case.
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