Shiru Shir / shlomo gronich.
(photo credit: ilan_basor)
Two well-known celebrities in Israel who have been accused of sexual assault may not face any criminal charges, it has emerged this week.
It was reported on Thursday that police are expected to not press charges against singer Shlomo Gronich, after several women accused him of sexual assault dating back 25 years. According to Kan News, police have decided to close the case against Gronich due to a lack of evidence.
A police spokesman would not confirm to The Jerusalem Post if a final decision has been made.
In September, on the eve of Gronich receiving a lifetime achievement award from the Education Ministry, two women anonymously accused the singer of sexual assault. The first woman said that Gronich touched her inappropriately in his home when she was 17, more than 25 years ago. A second woman reportedly accused Gronich of drugging and trying to rape her when she was 16. She told Channel 2 that she does not recall much of the evening, but remembers waking up naked in his bed and him attempting but failing to penetrate her.
The Education Ministry still awarded Gronich with the prize, but the singer himself did not show up to collect it, and instead sent his wife.
Earlier this week, it was reported that Moshe Ivgy, one of the best-known actors in Israel, is expected to sign a plea deal in which he will admit to offenses but not be indicted. According to Channel 2 News, the case against Ivgy will be closed without an indictment as part of the deal. In response to the reports, the Haifa District Attorney’s Office said Monday that no decision has been made and no deal signed.
On Thursday, Ivgy’s attorney, Zion Amir, appeared on Army Radio and told Ilana Dayan that Ivgy will ultimately see “the most just outcome.”
Amir also slammed the “culture” of accusations he sees today: “Who wants to deal with the truth anymore? To hell with the law, with rules and evidence.
Today there is only the judgment in the public square.”
The police recommended in August that Ivgy, who is known for his work in film, television and theater, be indicted on sexual offenses against four women between 2012 and 2013. A pre-trial hearing was held with the actor two weeks ago. The accusations against the veteran of film, stage and TV first came to light in 2016, after one woman threatened to sue the Haifa Theater over Ivgy’s alleged behavior there and their handling of her complaint. Many other women then came forward with their own stories about Ivgy, who has denied all the allegations. Last year, months after the accusations came to light, he was awarded a prize by the Haifa International Film Festival.