Developer may have handed cash to ministers for Holyland permits.
By JPOST.COM STAFF, YAAKOV LAPPIN, DAN IZENBERG
Real estate developer Meir Rabin, suspected of acting as an intermediary in the Holyland real estate scandal, was said by his lawyer on Monday to be suspected of bribing top lawmakers, as well as Shas spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, in a bid to gain approval for the project's expansion.According to attorney Giora Zilberstein, Rabin is suspected of bribing Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman and MKs Ruhama Avraham (Kadima) and Danny Naveh (Likud), who served as ministers at the time.Zilberstein made the announcement during a court session concerning the extension of Rabin's remand at the Petah Tikva Magistrate's Court.RELATED: Editorial:Corruption in proportionBribery is the most severe offense for a public official - and the hardest to proveMahane Yehuda regulars bemoan city government's tarnished imageUse of gag orders hits low in latest scandalsMockceremony at HolylandLieberman, Avraham and Naveh immediately denied the allegations."This is nonsense that should not be dignified with a response," said a source from Lieberman's office. Avraham threatened to take legal action against those who had made such "slanderous" claims, adding she could not allow such "idle chatter" to pass.Naveh, meanwhile, said it was "a shame that names, such as my own, are frivolously being thrown into the air when it is clear that only a wild imagination could bring them up in the context of this affair."Upon his arrest several days ago, police said Rabin had promoted Holyland projects and passed on tens of millions in bribery money to decision makers in the Jerusalem Municipality. Rabin was put under heavy pressure to name those who had received the alleged bribe money. The police representative to court said Rabin's involvement in the alleged offenses was “monstrous,” adding that he refused to cooperate with detectives during questioning. “As the fog lifts, things are becoming clearer,” the representative said.Rabin was arrested on April 6 and has been held in detention ever since. He was remanded until Wednesday.
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