(photo credit: INIMAGE)
A top legal adviser to the municipalities of Rishon Lezion and Rehovot took bribes in order to advance the business interests of his associates, police said Sunday, in announcing their intention to charge him for bribery.
According to the police LAHAV 433 unit, while he served as an outside legal consultant for the two cities, attorney Roi Bar took bribes from a series of associates in order to lobby on their behalf in meetings of the local planning committees.
Police on Sunday pointed out what they described as a severe conflict of interest, in that Bar advocated in city planning meetings on behalf of his own clients, and also allegedly took bribes to help other associates win construction tenders.
The case, which first came to light in February 2014, centers on two projects in Rishon Lezion and one in Rehovot – the White residential towers complex run by Gindi Investments and a separate local entertainment complex in Rishon Lezion, and in Rehovot, the case revolves around the Hatzeirot Hamoshava residential towers complex, currently being built buy the Red Sea Group. Rehovot Mayor Rahamim Malul was questioned under caution last year on suspicion of taking bribes and breach of trust and obstruction of justice, due to the suspicion that he knew about Bar’s conflict of interest.
In February 2014, Gindi Investments co-CEOs Manor Gindi and his brother-in-law, Uri Levy, were arrested on suspicion of bribing Bar, but denied the charges. Police carried out a series of arrests and questioned over 100 people of interest in the case, and as the investigation proceeded they seized more than NIS 8 million worth of assets.
Police are also expected to recommend charges against a series of contractors who they suspect gave bribes to Bar.