Actor Yehuda Barkan Held for Tax Evasion

Entertainer Yehuda Barkan was arrested yesterday and questioned on suspicion of evading hundreds of thousands of shekels in income tax payments since 1999.

Barkan, 63, was questioned by Income Tax Authority investigators and brought to Tel Aviv Magistrate's Court. He was released after posting a NIS 500,000 bond and was barred from leaving the country.

At the hearing, investigator David Ephraim said the suspicions about Barkan's tax evasion arose during a tax authority investigation of his son Ro'i Barkan and his company, Dor Millennium.

Investigators believe that starting in 1999, Yehuda Barkan concealed hundreds of thousands of shekels in income from Jewish revival events he organized and issued receipts in the name of various companies registered to his sons Ro'i and Ido.

Yesterday the investigation against the elder Barkan became public when he was questioned under caution at Income Tax Authority investigation headquarters in Tel Aviv. Both sons were also questioned.

Barkan admitted yesterday that he had registered companies in his sons' names because he was in bankruptcy proceedings and was thus barred from registering himself. He also admitted to drawing a second salary from one of these companies in the name of Ro'i, who did not work at the firm.