Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu faced another round of questioning on Tuesday in Case 4000, also known as the “Bezeq Affair.”
Case 4000 refers to a corruption investigation looking into the relationship between Netanyahu and Bezeq controlling shareholder Shaul Elovitch, who also owns the Walla news site.
During Tuesday's questioning at the prime minister’s residence in Jerusalem, investigators were expected to present Netanyahu with new evidence provided by state witness Nir Hefetz, a former spokesman for the Netanyahu family.
Former Netanyahu Spokesman Signs Witness Deal In Graft Probe, March 5, 2018
Elovitch and his wife Iris were expected to be questioned at the same time and reports indicated that Sara Netanyahu would be too.
Police confirmed on Tuesday afternoon that the prime minister was questioned for a number of hours at his residence as part of the investigation carried out by the Lahav 433 unit. "The investigation is being carried out with the assistance of the State Attorney and with the approval of the Attorney General. There are no further details available," the police said in a statement.
Police suspect Netanyahu acted to benefit Bezeq in return for favorable coverage on the news site. Police also suspect that Sara Netanyahu was in touch with Elovitch’s wife and through her acted to receive favorable coverage in Walla.
Channel 2 News reported in May that Hefetz testified to the police that he “spoke to Elovitch six to seven times a day” when he served as Netanyahu’s adviser. He also provided evidence that both Netanyahu and Elovitch were aware of an illicit quid pro quo deal between them.
Moreover, Hefetz related that during a visit to Manhattan by the Netanyahu family, wealthy Jews gave Sara Netanyahu credit cards with which to buy herself gifts.
The Prime Minister’s Office responded that: “These are total lies regarding the Netanyahu- Elovitch relationship. Also the false and malicious claim that the prime minister and his wife used friends’ credit cards is false. This never happened.”
Hefetz also provided new material in Case 1000 and Case 2000.
The Kan public broadcaster reported Monday night that police are also expected to question under caution billionaire Arnon Milchan in connection with Case 2000.
Milchan is a central figure in Case 1000, which relates to gifts given
by Milchan and James Packer to the Netanyahus, including expensive cigars, champagne and other gifts worth a total of some NIS 1 million over several years.
New information, however, suggests he may also be linked to Case 2000, which probes an alleged arrangement between Netanyahu and Yediot Aharonot publisher Arnon Mozes to weaken his competitor Israel Hayom
in exchange for better coverage of him in Mozes’s paper.
The new findings indicate that Milchan may have mediated the alleged deal between Netanyahu and Mozes, according to Kan.
Last month Netanyahu was expected to be questioned in Case 4000, but police surprised him by questioning him, for the first time, in Case 3000, the "Submarines Affair" instead.