Former President Moshe Katsav
Former President Moshe Katsav. Photo by Ilan Assayag
Text size

Former President Moshe Katsav will enter Ma'asiyahu prison in Ramle on Wednesday to begin serving a seven-year jail term for two counts of rape and other sexual offenses. Katsav must report to the jail by 10 A.M. on Wednesday.

After Israel’s Supreme Court decided on November 10 to reject Katsav's appeal, he became the first Israeli president in history to receive a prison sentence for any crime.

He was convicted of raping a former female employee when he was a Cabinet minister, and sexually harassing two others when he was president between 2000 and 2007.

Katsav will initially be held in a cell for inmates who are thought to be at risk of suicide. It is under the closer surveillance of his guards and is equipped with two security cameras. The doors to his lavatory and shower are translucent so they don't obstruct the view of the ex-president.

The prison service decided to allow him to initially share a cell with convicted former government minister Shlomo Benizri.

Live Blog

10:08 - Katsav enters prison, begins 7-year sentence over 2 counts of rape

10:02 - Katsav arrives at Ma'asiyahu prison

9:11 - Katsav departs Kiryat Malakhi home, en route to Ma'asiyahu prison

9:09 - Katsav: One day you'll see that you have buried a man alive

9:08 - Katsav: In the appeal documents handed over to the court lies my acquittal

9:07 - Katsav: There is something worse than a president entering jail, an innocent president entering jail

9:06 - Katsav: A man is executed today because the court did no believe 20 real-time witnesses and more and preferred to believe 20 witnesses speaking after the fact

9:05 - Katsav: In Israel today a man is executed without evidence

9:03 - Katsav prepares to give statement to press

9:01 - Mass of supporters, police, journalists preventing former president from advancing toward vehicle

9:00 - Katsav leaves Kiryat Malakhi home to supporters' cheers

8:34 – I talked to Moshe on the phone and he sounds worried, says Katzav's best friend.

8:31 – Family says Katsav will speak to media

8:29 – Katsav is at his home in Kiryat Malachi

8:08 – Numerous police forces deployed at Ma'asiyahu prison; Large presence of international media on location.

7:50 – Katsav's sons release letter addressed to their father to the media: "We're sorry we didn't do more," "We stand by you at this difficult time."