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Israel - Attorney General May Indict Olmert on Talansky Cash Envelopes Scandal

Published on: March 1, 2009 02:11 PM
By: IsraelNN
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 Ehud Olmert and Morris Talansky [right] in 2003. Ehud Olmert and Morris Talansky [right] in 2003.

Israel - Attorney General Menachem Mazuz announced he is considering indictment proceedings against outgoing Prime Minister Ehud Olmert for accepting more than $150,000 in cash from American businessman Morris Talansky.

Mazuz said his final decision will be made after a preliminary hearing.

Olmert’s media advisor Amir Dan, responding to Mazuz’s announcement, charged that “it is has been clearly proven that Talansky’s testimony was false and is insignificant.”

Talansky testified last year that he had transferred the cash in envelopes to Olmert - at his request - over the past 15 years.

The businessman is not suspected of having tried to bribe Olmert. He told police, “I had a very close relationship with him, but I wish to add at this time at the relationship of 15 years was purely of admiration. I never expected anything personally. I never had any personal benefits from this relationship whatsoever.”

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Last month, State Prosecutor Moshe Lador rejected a request by Talansky that he testify again in closed court proceedings.
However, Lador agreed to consider holding some of the hearings in secret and authorize a partial gag order.

Talansky reportedly will return to Israel in the next few weeks to testify, and Mazuz’s dramatic announcement may be connected with his next trip. Talansky told investigators last year that Olmert had asked him in 1993 for contributions to his Jerusalem mayoral campaign. The cash was transferred in envelopes, according to the testimony, often through Olmert’s personal bureau director Shula Zaken.

News 1 reported Saturday night that although she has retained her right to remain silent in the Talansky affair as well as other probes against Olmert, Zaken incriminated Olmert in the probe of his purchase of a home on Cremieux Street in the Germany Colony neighborhood in Jerusalem.

She said that she acted on his instructions to pressure municipal officials to allow renovations of the building despite its being zoned as a preserved property, prohibiting external construction.
Olmert allegedly received a $330,000 reduction in the price of the home in exchange for his efforts.

 


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Read Comments (4)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Mar 01, 2009 at 01:26 PM Please Mr. Talansky ! Says:

Please give some cash envelopes to worthy Yiddishe causes. People are in great need now due to the bad economy. Large mishpuchas can't feed their children and pay their bills. Help them now rather than the politicians. They have a free Volvo !

2

 Mar 01, 2009 at 01:38 PM Anonymous Says:

The incompetence of the judicial and law enforcement authorities in EY is beyond belief; they have been investigating this stuff for years and every few months we hear another annoucement that an indictment is "coming soon". Either they should close the investigation or move forward but this game of issuing a press release every few months is unfair to both Ohmert and to the rest of us.

3

 Mar 01, 2009 at 02:15 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #2  
Anonymous Says:

The incompetence of the judicial and law enforcement authorities in EY is beyond belief; they have been investigating this stuff for years and every few months we hear another annoucement that an indictment is "coming soon". Either they should close the investigation or move forward but this game of issuing a press release every few months is unfair to both Ohmert and to the rest of us.

The police actually know that he's a crook but they keep dragging it out in order to get concessions and money from him. The whole system in EY is soooo corupt!

4

 Mar 02, 2009 at 10:42 AM cynic Says:

i have known talansky for years,he would not know what honesty is, if it him in the face.
i guess that "hakesef yaneh es hakol" explains why he is on the board of mirrer yeshiva and REITS

5

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