Bank Hapoalim 311.
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski )
The State Attorney’s Office announced on Tuesday that it plans to indict former
Bank Hapoalim chairman Dan Dankner, subject to a hearing, on charges of
fraudulently obtaining a loan from Bank Hapoalim.
The Economic Division
of the State Attorney’s Office informed Dankner’s attorneys on Monday that it is
considering filing an indictment against Dankner on counts of fraudulent receipt
and carrying out actions prohibited by the Money Laundering Law.
office noted that the suspicions regarding the Bank Hapoalim loan have been
separated from initial suspicions raised against Dankner in September, in light
of State Attorney Moshe Lador’s decision not to discuss the case but to transfer
it to Deputy State Attorney Shai Nitzan for consideration.
the State Attorney’s Office announced its intention to indict Dankner for
bribery, corruption, fraud and breach of trust in a corporation,
money-laundering and harming proper banking practices.
regarding the allegations made in September should be held soon, the office
said, adding that in all likelihood the new allegations against Dankner will be
addressed in the same hearing.
According to the State Attorney’s Office,
the additional suspicions against Danker include that on October 27, 2008, the
former Bank Hapoalim chief approached Zion Kenan, then director of the bank’s
Corporate Division, and requested a bridging loan of $3.4 million (NIS
12,841,800 at the then prevailing exchange rate), for a period of one
The draft indictment alleges that Dankner told Kenan the purpose of
the loan was to fund investments for property construction.
request was allegedly transferred to Bank Hapoalim’s stakeholder’s
Partly as a result of Kenan’s explanation about the purpose of
the loan, the stakeholder’s commission approved the application, subject to a
review by Kenan confirming that the total value of Dankner’s personal assets, as
announced on his personal assets report, was at least twice that of the loan
request, the draft indictment alleges.
According to the State Attorney’s
Office, in November 2008 Dankner submitted two different statements containing
false or incomplete information regarding the value of his personal assets. As a
result of the statements, Bank Hapoalim approved the loan, which Dankner put to
various uses but not toward construction of real-estate assets as he had told
Kenan, the draft indictment charges.
The investigation against Dankner
was conducted by the police’s National Fraud Squad and by a team of attorneys
from the Economic Department of the State Attorney’s Office, led by division
head attorney Avia Alef.
Dankner’s lawyers – Yoram Raved, Joseph Benkel,
Ruth Litvak and Navot Tel-Tzur – said Dankner strongly rejected the
“There is no room to summon Dankner to a hearing on this
matter, when only a few days ago the State Attorney’s Office stated in a
different decision on this very same matter that there is no causal connection
between the assets report given by Dankner and the loan approval by members of
the bank’s loan committee,” Dankner’s attorneys said.
“On that basis the
State Attorney’s Office should also close the case against Dankner,” they
Dankner’s lawyers added that Dankner had repaid the loan in full to
Bank Hapoalim some time ago.
“The [State Attorney’s Office’s] insistence
of attributing further allegations to Dankner points to a serious weakness in
the claims made against him so far. There is no other explanation for a further
In this light, the decision to summon Dankner to a
hearing in this case provokes unease and raises serious doubts as to the
discretion and motives behind the decision.”
Last week, Deputy State
Attorney Shai Nitzan announced his decision to close the fraud case against Bank
Hapoalim chairman Zion Kenan for lack of evidence.
The decision came a
year after the Fraud Squad opened an investigation into Kenan, who was suspected
of fraud, fraudulent receipt and breach of trust in relation to a Bank Hapoalim
credit application made by Dankner.
Police had suspected that Kenan had
lied to members of the bank’s stakeholders’ committee during an October 2008
meeting regarding Dankner’s loan request.
Kenan allegedly said that he
was in possession of a personal assets report that Dankner had sent him. Police
suspected that Kenan had not received the report at that time.
said, however, that after examining the investigation files, he found that the
case lacked the evidence needed to prove beyond reasonable doubt that Kenan had
lied to Bank Hapoalim committee members, or to establish a causal link between
the alleged lies and the committee’s decision to approve the loan to Dankner.