Israel Says Will Refuse Entry to Former Peru President Fleeing Corruption Charges

Foreign Ministry says Alejandro Toledo, who is wanted in relation to $20m corruption case, will only be allowed into Israel after his affairs in Peru are settled.

Alejandro Toledo, former president of Peru, speaks at the 2010 Biennial of the Americas Former Heads of State Summit in Denver, Colorado, U.S., on Monday, July 12, 2010.

Former Peru president Alejandro Toledo will not be allowed into Israel, the Foreign Ministry said Sunday, following reports that Toledo, who is wanted in his native country on corruption charges, was en route to Tel Aviv from San Francisco.

>> Get all updates on Israel: Download our free App, and Subscribe >>

"Mr. Alejandro Toledo will be allowed into Israel only after his affairs in Peru are settled," Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon said.

Alejandro Toledo and his wife Eliane Karp in Villa El Salvador, Peru, March 19, 2000.
Bloomberg News

A senior Israeli official said that information obtained by Israel shows that Toledo was not on board the San Francisco-Tel Aviv flight. "However, if he did board under an assumed identity then the plane is scheduled to land at 8:30 P.M. and he is refused entry to Israel," the official said.

>> Follow Toledo's flight here >>

Prosecutors in Peru allege Toledo took $20 million in bribes from Brazilian construction conglomerate Odebrecht and a judge ruled that he must be jailed for up to 18 months while charges against him are prepared. 

Toledo's wife has Israeli citizenship and Toledo has a long friendship with Israeli businessman Yossi Maiman, who prosecutors accuse of acting as a middleman for at least $10 million in alleged bribes.  

A source in Peru's Interior Ministry told Reuters on Saturday that the U.S. informed Peru that they were not planning to keep Toledo from boarding the flight. Toledo was booked on a flight from San Francisco to Tel Aviv on Saturday, the source said, and is expected to land in Israel on Sunday evening. 

Be the first to read Barak Ravid's latest scoop. Sign up below
and receive it directly in your inbox

A judge in Peru issued an international arrest warrant for Toledo Thursday, and the government offered a 100,000 soles ($30,000) reward for any information leading to his capture after he failed to turn himself in to authorities. 

Peru has said Interpol issued a red alert to 190 member countries to help find him, but Toledo does not appear on its list of wanted persons. Interpol has not responded to requests for comment on Toledo.