AG Will Not Seek Criminal Probe Into Netanyahu Aide's Sexual Harassment Case

PM's bureau chief Natan Eshel will be investigated by the Civil Service Commission and his alleged victim, R., will be asked to testify; Eshel instructed to take 10-day vacation.

Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein decided Sunday that he will not launch a criminal investigation into the Eshel affair, in which Netanyahu's bureau chief is suspected of harassing a female employee.

Weinstein decided that instead, an investigation will be conducted by the Civil Service Commission, and that R., Natan Eshel's alleged victim, will have to testify. Eshel announced Sunday that he will be taking a 10-day vacation, as he was instructed by Weinstein.

Natan Eshel - Nir Keidar - 29012012
Natan Eshel on his way to synagogue in Tel Aviv Friday afternoon.Nir Keidar

Sources told Haaretz and other media outlets last week that Natan Eshel sexually harassed an official in the Prime Minister's Office who is identified in the media only by the initial R. Sources close to Eshel said it was "cheap gossip."

Over the weekend, Weinstein received the interim report from the preliminary Civil Service Commission investigation he ordered just a few days days ago; the document contains evidence that Eshel may have committed sexual offenses against R.

Sources told Haaretz last week that three senior members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's staff - Hendel, Cabinet Secretary Zvi Hauser and Military Secretary Yohanan Locker - told Weinstein about Eshel's alleged improprieties.

Read this article in Hebrew