Netanyahu to Ask Court to Dismiss One Corruption Case Against Him

The former prime minister tells judges he would seek the Bezeq-Walla corruption case dismissed, arguing that the investigation began before it was approved by the attorney general

Yael Freidson
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Benjamin Netanyahu seen at the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court in May.
Benjamin Netanyahu seen at the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court in May.Credit: Ohad Zwigenberg
Yael Freidson

Opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu told the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court on Thursday that he planned to submit a request to have the indictment against him in Case 4000 canceled. Netanyahu stands accused of bribery, fraud and breach of trust in connection with the communications company Bezeq and its Walla website.

Netanyahu is expected to claim that contrary to the requirement of the law, the investigation against him began before it had been approved by the attorney general.

Netanyahu had sought once before – during the preliminary phase of the trial – to have the indictment withdrawn on the same grounds. However, the judges postponed any decision until the completion of the evidentiary stage of the hearings, saying that “at the end of the procedure we will consider whether there is justification, given the circumstances of the case, to disqualify [the indictment] due to the lack of admissibility of evidence in Cases 1000 and 4000, to the extent that it is determined that investigative work was carried out prior to the attorney general’s consent.”

Shaul Elovitch at the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court in April.Credit: Ohad Zwigenberg

Prosecutors are expected in the next few days to release the names of the second group of witnesses to be called up in the trial, which is slated to begin next month.

Netanyahu’s attorney Boaz Ben Zur, has asked that police investigators be included in this group so that Netanyahu’s claim can be heard in court. Ben Zur’s cross-examination of them is expected to try to prove that investigative work was undertaken before the attorney general had approved it.

Netanyahu’s petition is similar to one filed on Wednesday by Shaul and Iris Elovitch, who have been indicted for bribing Netanyahu while he was prime minister. Shaul Elovitch was the controlling shareholder of Bezeq at the time the alleged Case 4000 offenses occurred.

The couple’s petition details a series of faults and omissions they alleged occurred in preparing the indictment and in the criminal proceedings against them.

“The investigation was tainted from the start,” the petition states. “The investigators spared nothing and employed predatory tools against the petitioners and against other witnesses and suspects. Harmful and prohibited acts and investigative measures were carried out during the course of the probe; property belonging to the petitioners was seized in violation of the law; the power of arrest and [pressure on] family members were applied improperly to break the spirit of those under investigation; the suspects were questioned under the most difficult conditions in violation of the law.”

Click the alert icon to follow topics:



Automatic approval of subscriber comments.
From $1 for the first month

Already signed up? LOG IN


Charles Lindbergh addressing an America First Committee rally on October 3, 1941.

Ken Burns’ Brilliant ‘The U.S. and the Holocaust’ Has Only One Problem

The projected rise in sea level on a beach in Haifa over the next 30 years.

Facing Rapid Rise in Sea Levels, Israel Could Lose Large Parts of Its Coastline by 2050

Tal Dilian.

As Israel Reins in Its Cyberarms Industry, an Ex-intel Officer Is Building a New Empire

Queen Elizabeth II, King Charles III and a British synagogue.

How the Queen’s Death Changes British Jewry’s Most Distinctive Prayer

Newly appointed Israeli ambassador to Chile, Gil Artzyeli, poses for a group picture alongside Rabbi Yonatan Szewkis, Chilean deputy Helia Molina and Gerardo Gorodischer, during a religious ceremony in a synagogue in Vina del Mar, Chile last week.

Chile Community Leaders 'Horrified' by Treatment of Israeli Envoy

Queen Elizabeth attends a ceremony at Windsor Castle, in June 2021.

Over 120 Countries, but Never Israel: Queen Elizabeth II's Unofficial Boycott