Police to consolidate evidence on PM

Material to be handed to State Attorney's Office; Talansky affair, 'Rishontours' case to be discussed.

September 4, 2008 00:24
1 minute read.
Police to consolidate evidence on PM

Olmert worried 224.88. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])


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The Chief of Investigations for Israel Police, Yohanan Danino is set to meet on Thursday and Sunday with the heads of the police team investigating affairs allegedly involving Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in order to consolidate the Police's position and to hand over materials to the State Attorney's Office. Both the matter of envelopes of cash allegedly given to the prime minister in the period before he held his current position and the "Rishontours" case will be discussed. The discussions will aim to examine and consolidate all evidence in the affairs in which Olmert is suspected. The prime minister is currently being investigated in a total of six cases of alleged corruption. In one affair, according to allegations, American-Jewish businessman Morris Talansky gave Olmert $150,000 in cash over a 10-year period, allegedly to help him in four election campaigns, including two for mayor of Jerusalem and two Likud primaries. In addition, Talansky allegedly gave Olmert tens of thousands of dollars contributed by American Jews who attended campaign dinners for various Israeli and American Jewish philanthropic organizations. Talansky said this money went to upgrade Olmert's flight tickets and hotel rooms. During a pre-trial testimony on May 27, Talansky was also questioned about the possibility that he had given Olmert more than $200,000 to cover debts from his 1998 Jerusalem mayoralty campaign. In the latest of the investigations, the prime minister is suspected of having sent bills to more than one non-profit organization for trips that he made abroad to raise money for them. When he spoke on behalf of two or three different non-profit organizations on the same trip, he would charge each of them the full flight fare. According to the allegations, the extra money went into a special account managed by Rishontours, his travel agency, and was used to pay for private trips made by him and his family. Police estimate that he collected $110,000 using this system. Currently, almost no money remains in the account.

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