Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s lawyers plan to file a court case accusing State Attorney Moshe Lador of libel by the end of the week. Olmert’s spokesman told the Jerusalem Post on Wednesday that with the 48-hour ultimatum given by Olmert to Lador in which to issue an apology past, with no apology forthcoming, Olmert’s lawyers were free to submit the lawsuit at their convenience.
Olmert had complained on Sunday that Lador ruined his reputation when Lador, in an interview to Haaretz
, described a $75,000 loan Olmert had received from American businessman Joe Elmaliach in 1993 as “scandalous.” Olmert said that the loan had been re-paid and demanded that Lador and Haaretz
apologize and together donate NIS 50,000 to an agreed upon charity.
Lador did not apologize, but on Monday, the state Attorney’s Office issued a response, stating that the fact that the loan was returned was unknown to Lador and pointing out that the said loan was not included in the fraud charges filed against the ex-prime minister. The response also defended Lador’s right to pass judgment on the notion that a public official held on to an undocumented $75,000 “loaned” to him by a businessman for 16 years.
The response also stated that the state was not aware that Olmert had paid back a second loan of $100,000 from the same source, which Olmert had neglected to disclose to the State Comptroller.