State calls on court to reject Benizri's request to shorten sentence

The state on Tuesday asked the Supreme Court to reject former Labor and Welfare Minister Shlomo Benizri's request to reconsider a four-year jail sentenced handed down in an earlier decision. Recently, the Supreme Court decided to increase the punishment originally handed down by Tel Aviv District Court from 18 months to four years in jail. In his request for a second hearing, Benizri argued that the court had established a new legal principle by sentencing him to such a long sentence. Benizri was convicted of fraud and breach of faith because he accepted benefits from a foreign manpower contractor, Moshe Sela, and used his power as a minister to do favors for Sela in return. According to the state, the punishment handed down by the Supreme Court was proportional. Furthermore, according to the law, no one may appeal a decision made by the Supreme Court unless it creates a new legal principle. No new principle was established in the Benizri ruling, according to attorney Michael Karshen of the State Attorney's office.