Gavrieli no longer honorary consul in Georgia [4]

The Georgian ambassador to Israel has brought more embarrassment on Reuven Gavrieli, whose alleged illegal gambling network was revealed on Monday, by refuting claims he is still an honorary consul to Georgia. In court, one of Gavrieli's lawyers, Zion Amir, referred to his position with the Georgian Foreign Ministry, although Lasha Zhvnia said on Monday that Gavrieli's contract expired in November 2002 and was not renewed. This is because the Georgian government stopped using honorary consuls in Israel. While saying it "was a surprise to hear" that Gavrieli was still the honorary consul, Zhvnia wasn't upset. "We value anybody who contributed to Israel-Georgia relations and I'm sure he contributed. We are not here to be angry with anyone," he said. Amir couldn't be reached for comment by press time. On Monday the police and the Tax Authority disclosed that they had cracked what they say is a multimillion shekel illegal gambling network run by the family of Likud MK Inbal Gavrieli. Last month they arrested 11 people on suspicion of money laundering and tax evasion, as well as operating illegal Internet casinos. Those brought in included Reuven Gavrieli and Yoram Tsarfati, both of whom were released to house arrest on Monday. The other suspects included Ezra (Shoni) and Shlomi Gavrieli, the father and brother of Inbal Gavrieli, and Shlomi and Meir Abergil. The four men were released on Tuesday to house arrest of seven days.