$6-7 Million Seized So Far in Yisrael Beiteinu Case, Police Source Says

Police source says sums indicate how far-reaching alleged corruption is; most of the money was found in suspects' homes and bank accounts.

Yaniv Kubovich
Yaniv Kubovich
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Yisrael Beiteinu's Lieberman, and Kirshenbaum.
Yisrael Beiteinu's Lieberman, and Kirshenbaum.Credit: Emil Salman
Yaniv Kubovich
Yaniv Kubovich

A source within the police involved in the probe into the Yisrael Beiteinu graft case said on Sunday that investigators have so far seized between $6.3 and $7.4 million (25-30 million shekels). According to the source, most of the money was seized in the suspects' homes, in bank accounts, and in savings accounts.

The source said the sums seized at this early stage of the investigation indicate how far-reaching the alleged corruption is.

The police have claimed from the beginning of the investigation that the case involves large sums of public money that was transferred to non-profits and interested parties.

The source said that he believed there is more money that is still unaccounted for, and that the police intend to also seize some of the suspects' properties and possessions that they may try to sign over to other persons.

The police say they are still building up the case based on the evidence gathered by officers, with more arrests expected. Sources did not rule out the possibility of questioning Foreign Minister and Yisrael Beiteinu leader Avigdor Lieberman if the needed.

Dozens of public officials have been detained in connection with the broader police investigation, involving suspicions of illegal payment of funds to certain organizations, money laundering, granting improper personal favors, bribery and improper promotions allegedly provided to associates. The suspects include Yisrael Beiteinu Knesset member and Deputy Interior Minister Faina Kirshenbaum and fellow party member and former Tourism Minister Stas Misezhnikov.

On Thursday, at a hearing on over a request to extend the period of detention of several of the suspect, Rishon Letzion Magistrate’s Court judge Menahem Mizrahi stated that there had been a dramatic development in the investigation that could lead to a widening of the probe.

Immediately following the court session, the police issued another gag order in the case, barring the disclosure of the details regarding the new development to which the judge referred. From the tenor of the hearing, however, it could be understood that there was new evidence that was only obtained on Thursday evening around 5:30 P.M.

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