AG to Decide on Probe of Katsav's Friend

Uri Yoeli allegedly wrote a memorandum of understanding for A., who accused former President Katsav of rape, to ensure that she left her job quietly.

Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein is expected to decide soon whether to order a criminal investigation into the person accused of trying to buy the silence of a woman who ended up accusing former President Moshe Katsav of rape.

The incident in question took place in 1999, after Katsav, who was tourism minister at the time, fired the complainant known as A. from the Tourism Ministry. After the dismissal, Katsav's friend Uri Yoeli, who did not have an official position at the ministry, allegedly handwrote a memorandum of understanding between A. and Katsav that was meant to ensure she left her job quietly.

Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein Yoni Reif
Yoni Reif

The judges in Katsav's rape trial found that he was complicit in compiling the document and wrote that it "constitutes further evidence proving that the accused feared that A. was holding dark secrets from his past."

Katsav was convicted of rape and other sexual offenses in December and is scheduled to be sentenced on March 22.

The document stated that A. would hand in her resignation and that Katsav would write her a letter of recommendation and help her find another job.

Observers knowledgeable about the case and associates of Katsav said yesterday they considered it unlikely that Weinstein would order a criminal investigation, partly because it's not clear that writing the document constitutes a criminal offense.

It is also not clear whether the statue of limitations has expired on the matter.