AG May Order Criminal Probe of Olmert

Yuval Yoaz
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Yuval Yoaz

State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss has given the attorney general raw evidence related to suspicions that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was involved in making political appointments while serving as minister of industry and trade.

The comptroller's adviser on corruption matters, Yaakov Borovsky, said the evidence "raises a serious concern that the appointments are tainted." He said the material that has reached Lindenstrauss over the last few days, after the state comptroller's report on the matter was publicized, "changes the situation, and the conclusion is that matters range from the administrative realm to the criminal realm."

The comptroller's report determined that while Olmert was industry and trade minister and Ra'anan Dinur was the ministry's director general, senior ministry officials appointed people to positions in the Israel Small and Medium Enterprises Authority "for political considerations and through an improper procedure... to benefit political cronies of the party of then-minister Olmert."

Attorney General Menachem Mazuz will need to decide over the next few days whether to order a criminal investigation into Olmert's activities in light of the comptroller's report and the new findings.

Mazuz will also need to decide whether to ask the comptroller for additional raw evidence collected by his office during the preparation of the report.

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