Cherney, Zeevi, acquitted in Bezeq Affair after 16 years

Michael Cherney, Gad Zeevi, Zeev Rom and Michael Komisar were all acquitted by Tel Aviv District Court Judge Oded Mudrik on Wednesday in the Bezeq Affair after a 16-year battle to prove their innocence.
The charges against the businessmen and lawyer had also included money-laundering and receipt of assets in fraudulent circumstances.
In the Bezeq Affair, Cherney and Zeevi were accused of using fraudulent corporate documents to hide his involvement in the 1999 purchase of 19.6 percent of Bezeq from Cable and Wireless for $632,000.
Rom and Komisar were accused of assisting in the deception, including in obtaining government approvals needed for that large a purchase of a key state company like Bezeq.
Ultimately, while Mudrik noted issues with the activities of the defendants, he found reasonable doubt and that there were alternative non-illegal explanations for their conduct.
He also stated that the impact of defendants’ actions did not lead to “harm [of] essential interests of the State of Israel” or “of the banks” involved in the transactions.
The decision was Mudrik’s last before retirement, and he read it out publicly in court.
Mudrik was recently in the news as the judge who sentenced Rabbi Yoshiyahu Yosef Pinto in May to a year in prison on a bribery conviction.
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