'Police will only tell us before probe'

Olmert spokesman: “They won’t coordinate it with us ahead of time."

By
April 20, 2010 23:41
1 minute read.
Former prime minister Ehud Olmert talks to the pre

olmert court 311. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)

 
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Police will not notify ex-prime minister Ehud Olmert of plans to question him until a few hours before the interrogation takes place, Olmert’s spokesman, Amir Dan, told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday evening.

“They won’t coordinate it with us ahead of time,” Dan said.

Olmert was mayor of Jerusalem when plans for an enlarged Holyland residential complex were approved by the municipality – a procedure police say was driven by widespread bribery.

The former prime minister is suspected of accepting large bribes from the project’s backer, businessman Hillel Charni, in exchange for helping to ensure that the construction plans received approval. Olmert has denied all allegations against him.

On Monday, the Petah Tikva District Court rejected an appeal by former deputy mayor and current city councilman Eliezer Simhayoff against the decision last week by the Rishon Lezion Magistrate’s Court to extended his custody by eight days.


Simhayoff was arrested last week on suspicion of demanding and receiving hundreds of thousands of shekels in bribes. Police said he “divided the cash between himself and others in the municipality.”

His attorney, Moshe Osditsher, argued that there was no logic in holding his client in custody “while the main suspects in the case have been released,” referring to the recent release to house arrest of former Jerusalem mayor Uri Lupalionski and Holyland company accountant Eliyahu Hasson.

Judge Avraham Tal of the Petah Tikva court upheld the remand extension, saying classified case material made available to him by police showed that Simhayoff’s alleged role in the affair was unrelated to those of the suspects who had been released, and that there was no sound basis for releasing him.

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