Key Witness in Netanyahu Corruption Case Once Again Sues Israeli Lawmaker for Slander

In the second lawsuit filed against MK David Amsalem, magnate Arnon Milchan's aid claims she is being falsely accused of leaking her own statements to the police

Chaim Levinson
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David Amsalem at the Knesset, December, 2018.
David Amsalem at the Knesset, December, 2018. Credit: Olivier Fitoussi
Chaim Levinson

Hadas Klein, an aide to Israeli-American media mogul Arnon Milchan and the key witness in a corruption investigation of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, has sued coalition chairman MK David Amsalem for slander after he claimed Klein leaked her own statements to police to the Yedioth Ahronoth daily nearly a year ago.

The suit was Klein’s second against Amsalem. Last February, Klein sued Amsalem for defamation after the coalition whip said, in an interview with Army Radio, that the Yedioth report with details from Klein’s testimony constituted obstruction of justice.

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In the court hearing, it was agreed that Amsalem would make clear that Klein did not give an interview to Yedioth and that he did not intend to say that she obstructed due process. He does not apologize but he does express the regret for mental anguish caused to her.

Following the compromise, Amsalem and Klein’s attorney, Boaz Ben Zur, were interviewed on Army Radio. Last month, Amsalem sued Ben Zur, claiming the lawyer said that Amsalem “apologized” when he insists that he did no such thing, but only expressed “regret if she was hurt.”

Boaz Ben Zur
Boaz Ben ZurCredit: Moti Kimchi

Ben Zur submitted his defense brief and added to it another suit on behalf of Klein concerning another interview Amsalem gave in which he said, “For two years we’ve been exposed to very precise leaks from the investigations and especially from questioning of Klein. This is obstruction of justice. It could come from three sources: either the police or the state prosecutor’s office or the person who was questioned. No one else.”

In her slander suit, Klein argues that citing her name as a possible leaker is humiliating and degrading. She is seeking 300,000 shekels ($81,600) in damages.

In his defense brief, Ben Zur argued that Amsalem’s entire conduct in this affair and his lawsuit for slander six months after the interview was done out of “foreign motivations” and should therefore be summarily rejected.