Israeli ref questioned about ties to MoniGate

Israeli ref questioned a

January 6, 2010 00:18
1 minute read.


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One of Israel's top European-level referees, Sami Bachar, was detained and questioned by the Income Tax Authority on Monday regarding the ongoing investigation into Moni Fanan's financial affairs. Fanan, a former Maccabi Tel Aviv vice chairman and team manager, committed suicide in October and authorities have since been looking into a multi-million dollar investment scheme he had allegedly being running for some of Israel's top sports figures. Bachar's home was raided by Tax Authority investigators on Monday morning and he reportedly later admitted to not paying tax in Israel on money earned abroad, but denied having any connection with Fanan. Bachar, who refereed in the Euroleague Final Four last season, was released by the Tel Aviv Magistrate's Court after posting NIS 300,000 bail, but did not referee Monday night's women's league game between Ramat Hasharon and Elitzur Ramle. Maccabi's operations manager Ami Biton was the first to be interrogated by the Tax Authority in connection with the scandal, with former Israel and Maccabi coach Tzvika Sherf, current Maccabi coach Pini Gershon, Hapoel Gilboa/Galil coach Oded Katash and David Blatt among those questioned since. However, Bachar is the first referee to be called in by the Tax Authority to date. Huge losses, estimated at more than $20 million, are now believed to have driven Fanan to hang himself in his Ramat Aviv apartment.

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