MK Gavrieli defends use of immunity

Says house that police came to search was her own; insists family is innocent

By JPOST.COM STAFF
February 10, 2006 21:52
1 minute read.
inbal gavrieli 298.88

inbal gavrieli 298.88. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)

 
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MK Inbal Gavrieli responded on Friday for the first time to public condemnation about her invoking parliamentary immunity to prevent a police search of the home where it was believed evidence could be found to implicate her father and uncle of money laundering. While she insisted that she acted within her rights, she did express regrets over the impression of misconduct that some may have perceived over her actions. The incident to which Gavrieli referred was the arrest of her father Shoni and her uncle Reuven earlier in the week under suspicion of money laundering, tax evasion, and operation of internet casinos. The two were released to house arrest the following day. Police had been investigating the multi-million shekel case for two years. When police came to search the house where they claimed the suspects lived, the Likud MK used the immunity, granted to her as a Knesset member, to stop them. Gavrieli, in a Channel 1 interview, made sure to note that the home that the police wanted to search was, in fact, her own, and was the center of her daily life for the past few months. She accused the police of knowing that ahead of the attempted search. She also insisted that, as she lived there, she could not allow the police to search any part of the residence. However, Gavrieli insisted that there was nothing in her home "not even the smallest note with a phone number on it" that had to do with her father's work. For several years the Gavrieli family had been publicly perceived as being associated with white-collar crimes. Both Gavrieli and her uncle insisted that the accusations and rumors against them were unfounded. Reuven Gavrieli insisted that he was a legitimate businessman and investor, and that he only was involved in gambling in licensed casinos in countries where the practice was legal. He claimed that he was being persecuted and defamed by the police. "If you were to remove the name Gavrieli, there would be no case," his niece protested.

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