Two Chief Rabbinate Officials Investigated on Suspicions of Bribery

Police suspect they tried to unlawfully obtain a rabbinical permit for a member of Rishon LeZion city council.

The building of the Chief Rabbinate in Jerusalem.
Alex Levac

The national police fraud unit has detained a senior official of the Chief Rabbinate, as well as another employee, on suspicion of bribery and fraud.

A member of Rishon LeZion’s city council was also detained for questioning. Other people who are involved in the case have been questioned in recent weeks, some of them under caution as suspects who might be charged with a crime.

The police suspect that agents in the rabbinical certification and examination department of the Rabbinate worked to obtain certification for the councillor while he was working for the city, despite his lack of credentials. Policemen from the fraud unit searched the homes and offices of some of the suspects, including the department of certification at the Chief Rabbinate.

The Chief Rabbinate commented that it “has adhered to proper work procedures in all its departments and divisions over the years, with appropriate and orderly management. From the moment the Rabbinate found out about the investigation, which focuses on events that took place in 2011, we informed the police that we’d cooperate in the investigation as required. We hope and believe that concerns about improper behavior within the Rabbinate are dismissed.”