Israel's Supreme Court to Rule on Appeals of Olmert Cases

All three cases involve incidents that occurred before he became prime minister, during his terms as industry minister and/or mayor of Jerusalem.

Emil Salman

The Supreme Court will issue its verdict on Wednesday morning on appeals in three criminal cases against imprisoned former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

In the first case, Olmert is appealing his conviction on charges of accepting cash-filled envelopes from American Jewish businessman Morris Talansky. In the second, the state is appealing Olmert’s acquittal on charges of double-billing various organizations for overseas trips. In the third case, the state is appealing the leniency of Olmert’s sentence for using his influence at the government’s Investment Center to help a crony.  All three cases involve incidents that occurred before he became prime minister, during his terms as industry minister and/or mayor of Jerusalem.

Olmert is already serving a 19-month prison sentence for his role in the Holyland corruption case. If the Supreme Court upholds his conviction in the Talansky case, he will ask it to let him serve the eight-month sentence the Jerusalem District Court imposed in this case concurrently with his Holyland sentence. The lower court had ruled that the sentences should be served separately, meaning he would have to serve 27 months altogether.

In the Investments Center case, Olmert was given a suspended prison sentence. The state wants the Supreme Court to replace this with a jail term of at least six months, arguing that the lower court’s main reason for the lenient sentence no longer exists. The reason in question was Olmert’s initial acquittal in the Talansky case.