Israel Police Investigating Two Senior Politicians Over Suspected Criminal Behavior

One of the cases involves suspicions of serious corruption; in the other, interested parties suspected of financing some of the suspect’s political activity.

The Knesset chamber.
Itzik Adari

The police’s fraud squad is investigating suspected criminal behavior by two senior politicians in two unrelated cases, with Interior Minister Arye Dery being named as one of the two late Tuesday.

Amit Segal, a reporter for Channel 2 television, reported on one of those cases last night. Haaretz has obtained information about the second case, which involves suspicions against a key player in Israel’s political system. 

Though both cases have been under investigation for the last few months, both are still at a relatively early stage, so it’s hard to predict whether they are liable to end in indictments. So far, neither of the politicians have been questioned under caution.

The case reported by Channel 2 last night involves suspicions of serious corruption. That investigation is more advanced than the second probe, which, Haaretz has learned, involves suspicions that interested parties financed some of the suspect’s political activity.

Police are keeping both probes under wraps right now. But if they go public with either one, and especially if one or both results in an indictment, the impact on the political system is liable to be significant. 

Both investigations began after the Knesset elections in March 2015.

How these sensitive cases are handled will be a first test for three recently appointed or soon-to-be-appointed senior law enforcement officials: Attorney General Avichai Mendelblit, who has already been briefed on the more important of the two cases; Police Commissioner Roni Alsheich; and Coresh Barnoor, who has been tapped to replace Eran Kamin as head of the national fraud squad.