Rabbi Yeshayahu Pinto.
(photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
Former Lahav 443 police commander Menashe Arbiv sent a letter to Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein on Sunday rejecting accusations against him by highly influential Rabbi Yoshiyahu Yosef Pinto as not only false, but also impossible.
The letter referenced allegations that have surfaced against Arbiv by Pinto and his followers, including that Pinto’s follower Ben-Zion Suki paid for Arbiv to stay in a hotel in New York between June 9-June 14, 2009.
Arbiv’s letter, drafted by his lawyer Gidon Fischer, provides what appears to be a copy of Arbiv’s schedule during those days, indicating that he was meeting with President Shimon Peres in Washington, DC and giving a speech to the Anti-Defamation league in Washington during that time, but did not set foot in New York.
The next allegation against Arbiv was that Pinto got him a discount on buying a home in Tel Aviv.
To refute this allegation, the letter provides what it identifies as a statement from Africa Israel, connected with the buying of the home, as saying that Arbiv never bought a home through them. The letter also adds that Arbiv has continuously rented and has not bought a home.
Arbiv was also accused of getting help from Pinto for obtaining a green card for his son.
The letter provides a statement from Arbiv’s son that he never obtained a green card and was in the US on an Australian visa obtained through his Australian in-laws, as well as a polygraph test that appears to indicate that Arbiv’s son honestly rejected the allegations.
Further, the letter rebuts the accusations by Pinto’s follower, Gil Menashe, that he paid for flights for Pinto’s son and wife through the Kikar Yahalom travel agency, arguing that the agency has denied ever having had tickets purchased through it for Arbiv’s family.
One accusation that the letter does not directly address is the allegation that Arbiv’s son received money from Pinto over a period of time, but a spokesman for Arbiv said that this issue was also addressed in a polygraph test administered to Arbiv’s son.
The letter praises the state for deciding to file an indictment against Pinto, but expresses outrage at the media for “brutally spilling the blood” of Arbiv and convicting and judging him in a public relations circus before any real legal proceedings took place.
Also, the letter strongly implies that Weinstein should decide imminently regarding Arbiv’s case in order to clear Arbiv’s name and clarifies that Arbiv resigned from the police only to deprive Pinto of a “dream deal” of giving evidence to the state against Arbiv in exchange for immunity.