(photo credit: INIMAGE)
The Police Investigations Department filed an indictment with the Tel Aviv District Court on Wednesday alleging its former officer, David Arzkanazi, took bribes, leaked internal information, engaged in fraud, and committed other crimes from 2008 to 2011.
Arzkanazi, 47, from Bat Yam, and five other people, were charged in the bribery and fraud scam. The five were two private investigators, two private collection employees collecting tax debts on behalf of the Tel Aviv Municipality, and another former police officer.
It is alleged that Arzkanazi abused his authority to access classified records relating to various persons on behalf of the private investigators in exchange for thousands of shekels’ worth of bribes and other benefits.
The prosecution also allege that Arzkanazi accompanied the private tax collectors to help them seize personal property from debtors in exchange for bribes.
While assisting the tax collectors, he acted in uniform but without authorization, without properly reporting his actions and he also falsified reports for tax collectors.
The bribes were generally listed under the guise of being “loans,” but had no set date for repayment and no interest was charged to Arzkanazi.
The Tafnit legal services company, which helps to collect delinquent taxes, received NIS 200 every time a collection was carried out with a police officer, but only NIS 140 if a collection was performed without one.
Accordingly, most collection actions were performed with a police officer, but any police officer involved needed authorization from his commanders to be present.
In addition, officers attending a collection were prohibited from receiving any additional funds for their involvement.
The incentive structure led the collectors and Arzkanazi to “work” the system so that Tafnit and Arzkanazi could benefit illegally when he came with the collectors for unauthorized and unreported collection actions, the court documents claimed.
The Investigations Department also said that Arzkanazi falsely signed off on paperwork claiming that he helped forcibly enter a premises when he was not actually present, so that Tafnit and he could get paid more.
According to the allegations, Arzkanazi also illegally passed criminal records to a former police officer and friend of his regarding various persons the friend was having disputes with, or family members he was trying to protect, in exchange for bribe