(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will be questioned in the coming days of the seventh time by police over involvement in corruption Cases 1000 (the “gifts affair”) and 2000 (the “Yediot Aharonot affair”).
Some media reports – including The Jerusalem Post’s Hebrew-language sister publication Maariv – maintain that the questioning will take place on Friday morning.
The prime minister is suspected of taking bribes, fraud and breach of trust. In Case 1000, Netanyahu received expensive gifts from various businessmen, and police are checking whether he gave them anything in return.
In Case 2000, Netanyahu allegedly negotiated with Yediot Aharonot
publisher Arnon “Noni” Mozes for favorable coverage in exchange for support of a bill to weaken Israel Hayom
, the largest circulation Hebrew-language paper and Yediot’
s biggest competitor.
In the questioning, which will take place in the Prime Minister’s Residence in Jerusalem, Netanyahu is expected to be confronted with testimony that was collected from Australian billionaire James Packer late last month.
Media reports said that the testimony strengthens the possible charges of fraud and breach of trust against Netanyahu.
Packer is believed to have given expensive gifts to the prime minister. It was reported that he was asked by movie producer Arnon Milchan, who was also questioned in this affair and confirmed delivering gifts in the past, to “help bear the burden of providing the gifts” to Netanyahu and his wife, Sara.
Recently, the testimony of Hadas Klein, who worked as a personal assistant for both Milchan and Packer, was made public.
Klein is considered a key witness in this investigation.
She talked about substantial supply of champagne and cigars.
However, she did not know whether Milchan received anything in return.
Netanyahu was questioned twice recently – on November 9 and November 19. Police then reportedly said that this comes in an effort to “speed up the pace” of the investigation.