Supreme Court verdict for Olmert on Holyland conviction set for Tuesday

Lupolianski, Dankner, other verdicts also to be announced.

December 27, 2015 18:25
1 minute read.
Former prime minister Ehud Olmert

Former prime minister Ehud Olmert. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Former prime minister Ehud Olmert’s legal efforts face the end of the line on Tuesday, with the Supreme Court set to announce its decision on his appeal of his bribery conviction and six-year jail sentence from spring 2014 in the Holyland real estate corruption affair.

If the Supreme Court denies the appeal, Olmert will become the first prime minister to be put behind bars.

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If he wins on the appeal, he will reverse a string of losses over the last 18 months, and escape the longer of the two jail sentences hanging over his head.

The other jail sentence is a much shorter eight-month sentence for his fraud conviction issued in the Talansky “money envelopes” affair retrial last spring.

Another scenario could see the five-justice Supreme Court panel of Justices Salim Joubran, Neal Hendel, Uzi Vogelman, Isaac Amit and Zvi Zilbertal upholding Olmert’s conviction, while cutting his jail sentence in half or more as many observers believed he was given an overly harsh sentence even given the bribery convictions.

The Holyland trial involved 16 defendants, 13 of who were convicted of participating in the biggest bribery scheme in the state’s history, including former Jerusalem mayor Uri Lupolianski and former Bank Hapoalim chairman Dan Dankner.

Most of the defendants were powerful Jerusalem public servants who took bribes to smooth over legal and zoning obstacles for the Holyland real estate project in south Jerusalem.

The main bribery convictions were one for NIS 500,000 given to the prime minister’s brother, Yossi Olmert, at Ehud Olmert’s request, and one for NIS 60,000 for his benefit through his confidantes Shula Zaken and Uri Messer.

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