(photo credit: ORCITY.CO.IL)
After a weeklong media storm involving allegations of fraud and tax evasion worth millions, real estate developer Inbal Or was questioned under caution for several hours by police on Wednesday at the headquarters of the Anti-Fraud Unit.
Inbal Or is suspected of large-scale tax evasion and money laundering and that her company, Or City Real Estate, sold the same apartments to multiple buyers.
Or has denied the allegations against her.
On Wednesday she was released on bond after five hours of questioning, and police are expected to call her in for questioning again in the coming days.
Or has already been questioned under caution on several occasions by the Israel Tax Authority, which for the past several months has investigated the allegations against her company. In February she was arrested by the Tax Authority and released to house arrest, though her name remained under gag order until last week.
Police opened the criminal investigation against Or on Monday and have already questioned a number of associates in the case. These reportedly include a senior official who is said to have told police under caution that it was Or alone who committed the violations.
The police continues to collect documents and evidence that are related to the allegations, contacting also potential witnesses. As in other high profile cases, they will take steps to secure a state witness for the investigation.
An attorney for the head of sales for Or’s company said his client was questioned under caution on Monday, and has denied any claims of wrongdoing.
Attorney Ofer Almog said police asked his client about a specific house that was “double sold” but did not ask him anything about a wider conspiracy or method of fraud, and that he was released without conditions.
At the moment, a number of investors who paid for houses through Or City Real Estate are working on a class-action lawsuit against the company.
On Tuesday, Eitan Erez, the attorney tasked with breaking up the company said that “every single person who was supposed to be on watch failed completely and it appears that some of them will now need to renew their liability insurance.”
The 40-year-old Or – the mother of four children, including a four month old – started her career as a project manager for large real estate companies before she became a major player in her own right. In 2005 she founded Or City Real Estate and in 2012 it was named by Globes as the nation’s sixth largest real estate company, with Or owning a 20.46% share in the company.
She was twice listed by Lady Globe’s magazine as one of the top 50 female leaders in the country and is also a lecturer on real estate, entrepreneurship and urban renewal, at a number of universities, according to her official bio on her company’s website.
In November, Or City Real Estate was ordered to pay a total of NIS 720,000 to four former employees for unreceived overtime payment and compensation for dismissal.