Nazareth Illit Mayor Shimon Gapso is again facing bribery and corruption
charges, following allegations that he approved the operation of an events hall
in the city in exchange for money and favors.
Gapso was arrested and
questioned in connection to the allegations on Tuesday, before being released on
four days house arrest by the Haifa Magistrate’s Court. He was required to post
NIS 50,000 bond and is banned from leaving Israel or contacting witnesses in the
The allegations against Gapso include bribery, fraud, breach of
trust, money laundering and violation of privacy.
The case revolves
around a local events hall that Gapso allowed to remain open even though the
area it was located had still not been cleared for the operation of a private
business of this sort. In addition, last year Gapso’s son was married at the
same events hall.
On Tuesday, Gapso said of the new allegations that “a
war of attrition is being waged against me but I am innocent and I will prove
that when given the opportunity.”
In October, Gapso was one of three
mayors who won re-election despite being under indictment for corruption related
In June, Gapso was indicted on suspicion of taking bribes, but
the local municipality voted not to remove him from his position. The High Court
of Justice later ruled that Gapso must resign, but allowed him to run in the
October elections, which he won.