MK Hanegbi Suspended From Knesset Over Moral Turpitude Conviction

Court adds to perjury conviction; Hanegbi will have to to leave his Knesset seat within the next few days and will likely be replaced by journalist Nino Abesadze.

Haaretz Service
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Haaretz Service

A three-judge panel ruled Tuesday that MK Tzachi Hanegbi's perjury conviction consists of moral turpitude and sentenced him to pay a NIS 10,000 fine. The ruling bars Hanegbi from continuing to serve in the current Knesset, yet will enable him to run for the next Knesset.

Tzachi Hanegbi MK outside a Jerusalem court after his acquittal of corruption charges, July 13, 2010Credit: Tomer Appelbaum

Hanegbi was convicted of delivering false statements in July during his trial on political appointments while environment minister, but cleared of several other charges at the same time.

Hanegbi - a Kadima and former Likud lawmaker who has held six ministerial portfolios in over two decades in government - avoided conviction on cronyism-related charges of fraud, bribery and breach of trust.

The State Comptroller's Office had asked the court to attach a turpitude ruling to the sentence and to levy both a suspended prison term and a fine.

Hanegbi's attorney Jacob Weinroth asked the court to clear his client of turpitude and sentence him to a fine and community service.

His Knesset seat is likely to be filled by journalist Nino Abesadze. Abesadze had been slated to take the place of Eli Aflalo, who was expected to leave parliament to take a senior position at the Jewish National Fund, but his appointment became stalled by bureaucratic red tape.

Ten days ago, Hanegbi's lawyers asked prosecutors to outline the implications of the sentence they intend to levy against the ex-minister. Attorneys asked for specific information regarding the legislator's eligibility to serve as minister for the next seven years, should a suspended sentence be given.

Hanegbi's legal team told the court that finding the lawmaker guilty of turpitude and handing him a suspended sentence is tantamount to barring him from serving as minister for seven years.

Comments

SUBSCRIBERS JOIN THE CONVERSATION FASTER

Automatic approval of subscriber comments.
From $1 for the first month

SUBSCRIBE
Already signed up? LOG IN

ICYMI

Charles Lindbergh addressing an America First Committee rally on October 3, 1941.

Ken Burns’ Brilliant ‘The U.S. and the Holocaust’ Has Only One Problem

The projected rise in sea level on a beach in Haifa over the next 30 years.

Facing Rapid Rise in Sea Levels, Israel Could Lose Large Parts of Its Coastline by 2050

Tal Dilian.

As Israel Reins in Its Cyberarms Industry, an Ex-intel Officer Is Building a New Empire

Queen Elizabeth II, King Charles III and a British synagogue.

How the Queen’s Death Changes British Jewry’s Most Distinctive Prayer

Newly appointed Israeli ambassador to Chile, Gil Artzyeli, poses for a group picture alongside Rabbi Yonatan Szewkis, Chilean deputy Helia Molina and Gerardo Gorodischer, during a religious ceremony in a synagogue in Vina del Mar, Chile last week.

Chile Community Leaders 'Horrified' by Treatment of Israeli Envoy

Queen Elizabeth attends a ceremony at Windsor Castle, in June 2021.

Over 120 Countries, but Never Israel: Queen Elizabeth II's Unofficial Boycott