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January 6, 2013 5:00 pm

Israel’s Attorney General Investigating Whether Netanyahu Received Cash from Businessman

avatar by Zach Pontz

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Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu.

Israel’s Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein is investigating a claim that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accepted thousand of shekels in cash from a businessman named Dedi Graucher.

An initial investigation was prompted by a report on Israel’s Channel 10 over two years ago that claimed the PM accepted funding from private businessmen for trips for himself and his family while in public office.

According to the Jerusalem Post, the Justice Ministry released a statement saying that the former state comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss had received information about the alleged incident during the investigation into the “Bibi-Tours Affair.” The Attorney-General asked the police in May 2012 to review the information and determine whether there was enough evidence to justify a criminal investigation.

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In December, State Comptroller Yosef Shapira submitted a draft report on the overseas travels of 30 officials who served as ministers and deputy ministers between 2003 and 2011, among them Netanyahu, who had served as finance minister between 2003 and 2005.

The report did not, however, include Netanyahu’s travels during his stint as MK – the time period at the focus of Channel 10’s exposé, because Shapira was unsure of whether he had jurisdiction over members of the Knesset. Instead the records for that period were directly delivered to Weinstein.

According to Israel’s Channel 10, Netanyahu has denied the allegations.

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