AG Won't Charge Barak for His Wife's Hiring of Illegal Worker

The announcement came in response to a petition submitted by the Legal Forum for the Land of Israel, demanding an investigation against Barak.

Tomer Zarchin
Tomer Zarchin
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Tomer Zarchin
Tomer Zarchin

Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein said on Thursday that he would not investigate Defense Minister Ehud Barak in the case of his wife's hiring of an illegal worker.

Weinstein said that there was insufficient evidence linking Barak to the illegal hiring of Virginia, a Filipina woman employed by Barak's wife Nili Priel as a housekeeper at their home. In accordance with immigration authorities' policy, Weinstein decided not summon Barak to an investigation in the case.

Nili Priel, left, with Defense Minister Ehud Barak in April 2010.Credit: David Bachar

The attorney general responded to petition to the High Court of Justice submitted by the Legal Forum for the Land of Israel, which demanded to open an investigation against Barak himself and not only against Priel, for illegally hiring an illegal worker.

Police had been searching for Virginia since last year, when it emerged revealed that Priel was employing a migrant worker without a license.

The housekeeper, who did chores twice a week and helped out when the couple held parties, had previously been employed in Israel legally as a caretaker but began cleaning homes when her employment license expired.

Priel admitted late October that she had employed the foreign worker and said she takes full responsibility for the action.

The confession came after the attorney general closed the case for lack of evidence and subsequently reopened it after Israel Radio correspondent Carmela Menashe tracked down the woman by using the telephone number Priel had - which she did not give the investigators.

Weinstein noted that the investigation was now coming to an end, and added that there was no reason to involve the High Court of Justice at this stage of the investigation.

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