Danny Dankner Chooses Fine Over Testifying

Plea bargain calls for former Hapoalim chairman to pay NIS 1 million fine in return for dismissal of fraud, other serious charges.

Former Bank Hapoalim chairman Danny Dankner is choosing not to testify in the fraud trial he faces, and instead is working on a plea bargain that would have him pay a fine of NIS 1 million.

Dankner had been scheduled to testify today. He is facing charges of fraud, infringing on the proper management of a bank, and corporate breach of trust.

Instead, his attorneys and the prosecutor reached an agreement on a plea bargain. The agreement, which has not been signed yet, calls for Dankner to pay a fine of NIS 1 million, the highest penalty possible for the fraud charge Dankner had faced under the original indictment. That charge had been removed from the indictment sheet.

The new indictment to be handed down with the plea bargain will not contain charges of fraud, money laundering or harming bank operations, paving the way for Dankner to confess to lesser charges.

The sides did not come to any agreement over whether Dankner would go to jail.

The indictment served in 2012 involved four different cases where there were suspicions Dankner had a conflict of interest in his personal affairs and role at the bank.

He allegedly neglected to inform board members and executives when the bank was carrying out deals with his private business partners. He also allegedly lied in his personal declaration of wealth.

The charges also state Dankner allegedly recommended business dealings with his business partners without saying that they were his partners, and used his personal secretary’s bank account for his own purposes.

Moti Milrod