State appeals against bank embezzler Alon’s parole

Alon was sentenced in 2003 for her role in the embezzlement of some NIS 300 million.

Eti Alon (photo credit: RAANAN COHEN/MAARIV)
Eti Alon
(photo credit: RAANAN COHEN/MAARIV)
The Central District Attorney’s Office filed an appeal on Thursday to keep bank thief Eti Alon, who was convicted in 2003 of stealing millions of shekels from Trade Bank where she worked, from going free on parole.
On Sunday, the Prisons Service parole committee agreed to grant Alon’s parole, 12 years into a 17-year sentence.
Alon was sentenced in 2003 for her role in the embezzlement of some NIS 300 million from Trade Bank, where she had been the deputy chief of investment.
She confessed in 2002 to stealing the money over a fiveyear period, in order to help her brother Ofer Maximov pay his gambling debts. Maximov, who owed underworld crime bosses some NIS 100m., received a jail sentence of 15 years.
Alon’s theft left an indelible mark on the country’s banking industry. The small Trade Bank collapsed, costing the state a half-billion shekels in deposit insurance.
New banking regulation was put in place to prevent employees from having too much unsupervised access. The entirety of the banking system consolidated as Israelis lost faith in small banks and larger competitors bought them up.
Last June, the committee headed by judge Shlomo Shoham denied Alon’s parole request on the grounds that her actions had caused irreparable damage to the bank, its employees and its investors, as well as to the general public.
Niv Elis contributed to this report.