Gaydamak 'doubts' Israeli legal system

Follows Karadi's backing for police cmdr. leading money-laundering probe.

By DAN IZENBERG, JPOST STAFF
October 5, 2006 15:50
1 minute read.
Arkady Gaydamak serious

Arkady Gaydamak serious 248.88. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])

 
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"I have doubts in the Israeli legal system," businessman and Betar Jerusalem owner Arkady Gaydamak told Channel 2 on Thursday. The comment came following Police Inspector-General Moshe Karadi's backing for the head of the police intelligence and investigations unit, Cmdr. Yohanan Danino, whom the Russian-born billionaire had accused of severely damaging the Israeli economy by leading a "dishonest" investigation into his affairs. Karadi had said that Gaydamak's criticism of the police would in no way hinder the investigators working on his money-laundering case. Earlier, Attorney General Menahem Mazuz and State Attorney Eran Shendar rejected the "irrelevant criticism and baseless slander" of Gaydamak against Danino. The two regard the publications [including an Internet interview and paid ads in several newspapers, including The Jerusalem Post] as an attempt to frighten the man who is in charge of police investigations and slander without basis the law enforcement system in general." In the ad, Gaydamak accused Danino of breaking the law in his money-laundering investigation by allegedly conducting illegal wiretaps, falsifying documents and disseminating false information. The billionaire claimed that due to the investigation against him, Israel had suffered huge financial losses, since millions of dollars had been withdrawn from the banking system and the Israeli economy. He said that the economy was damaged to such an extent that Israel didn't have sufficient funds to pay for MDA ambulance crews at the outset of the war in Lebanon. "I, Gaydamak, an Israeli citizen, paid for these expenses out of my own pocket," Gaydamak wrote. Mazuz and Shendar stressed that the investigation relating to Gaydamak's alleged money laundering in a Tel Aviv branch of Bank Hapoalim was opened with their approval and that following the inquiry, several indictments had been served and tens of millions of shekels had been confiscated. The attorney general and state attorney added that after the case was examined by the state attorney's office, the decision was made to summon the Betar Jerusalem owner for a hearing. "The hearing has been completed and now the Tel Aviv District Attorney's Office is set to make a final decision on the matter," they said. "We hope that the newspaper announcement is not an attempt to influence the outcome of the hearing," they said. "We have full confidence in Commander Danino, with whose full cooperation we are working, and we appreciate his professionalism. Anyone attempting to blemish his name has no grasp on reality," read the statement.

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