Court indicts Rabbi Pinto as part of plea bargain in bribery case

Former Lahav 433 police commander Arbiv left post after corruption scandal but continues to proclaim innocence.

By
September 17, 2014 13:31
3 minute read.
Rabbi Pinto

Rabbi Pinto. (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

The state filed an indictment with the Tel Aviv District Court against Rabbi Yoshiyahu Yosef Pinto as part of a plea bargain agreed upon Wednesday for him to testify against former senior police officer Asst-Ch.

(ret.) Menashe Arbiv on corruption charges.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


Arbiv, the former head of Lahav 443, the “Israeli FBI,” resigned from his post on February 9 over the scandal, though he continues to proclaim his innocence and charges Pinto is corrupt and manipulating the state.

Pinto returned to Israel in May from the US and was interrogated by the police, likely including the use of polygraph tests, as part of a final round of confirmation of whether his allegations against Arbiv were sound.

The plea bargain includes Pinto pleading guilty to a reduced indictment and the state agreeing not to ask for more than a year of prison time.

Pinto will be free to argue to the court that despite his admission of guilt, he should be given no prison time.

During the February negotiations for a plea bargain, the deal appeared to be falling apart over the questionable veracity of Pinto’s allegations and his demand that any indictment against him be dropped.

JPOST VIDEOS THAT MIGHT INTEREST YOU:


It appears that Pinto has reduced his demands.

In February, Arbiv sent a letter to Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein rejecting the accusations as not only false, but impossible.

The letter referenced allegations that have surfaced against Arbiv by Pinto and his followers, including that Pinto’s follower Ben Zion Suki paid for Arbiv to stay in a hotel in New York between June 9 and June 14, 2009.

Arbiv’s letter, drafted by his lawyer Gidon Fischer, provided what appeared to be a copy of Arbiv’s schedule during those days, indicating that he was meeting with then-president Shimon Peres in Washington, DC, and giving a speech to the Anti-Defamation League – also in Washington – during those days.

The next allegation against Arbiv was that Pinto got him a discount on a house in Tel Aviv.

To rebut this allegation, the letter provided what it identified as a statement from the real estate firm, connected with the buying of the house, as saying that Arbiv never bought a home through the firm. The letter also says that Arbiv has continuously rented and did not buy a home.

Arbiv was accused of getting help from Pinto for obtaining a green card, i.e. US permanent residency, for his son.

The letter provides a statement from Arbiv’s son that he never obtained a green card and was in the US on an Australian visa obtained through his Australian in-laws, and a polygraph test that appears to indicate that Arbiv’s son honestly rejected the allegations.

Further, the letter rebutted the accusations by Pinto’s follower Gil Menashe that he paid for flights for Pinto’s son and wife through the Kikar Yahalom travel agency, arguing that the agency has denied ever having had tickets purchased through it for Arbiv’s family.

One allegation that the letter does not directly address is the allegation that Arbiv’s son received money from Pinto over a period of time, but a spokesman for Arbiv said this issue was addressed in a polygraph test administered to Arbiv’s son.

The letter praises the state for what then appeared to be a decision to go all out after Pinto, but expresses outrage at the media for “brutally spilling the blood” of Arbiv, i.e., defaming his character, and convicting and judging him in a public relations circus before any real legal proceedings took place.

Also, the letter strongly implied that Weinstein should make a swift decision regarding Arbiv’s case in order to clear Arbiv’s name, and clarified that Arbiv resigned from the police only to deprive Pinto of a “dream deal” of giving evidence to the state in exchange for immunity.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Lara Alqasem entered the courtroom for the first hearing in the High Court of Justice on October 17,
October 17, 2018
High Court: How could Alqasem support BDS if she wants to study in Israel?

By YONAH JEREMY BOB, CASSANDRA GOMES-HOCHBERG