Ethics Cmte: MK Ramon Won't Be Fined for Knesset Absence During Trial

Ethics Committee accepts indicted MK Ramon's claim that he tried shortening trial process.

The Knesset Ethics Committee decided Tuesday not to fine MK Haim Ramon for his absence from the Knesset during his eight-month trial.

The committee accepted Ramon's claim that he "acted as much as he could to shorten the process and bring his trial to an end as soon as possible."

The committee also recommended amending the law in order to allow suspending an indicted MK.

Ramon stopped arriving to the Knesset when he resigned as justice minister in August 2006, and was absent from the 68 days of the winter session of the Knesset, yet still received his NIS 178,000 salary.

According to the ethics regulation, a MK who is absent for more than two continuous months or absent from a third of Knesset meetings in a particular session, is required to present a "justified reason" for the absence, and the committee can impose a maximal punishment of a fine worth four months' salary.

Ramon also maintained that had he resigned, he would have received a pension salary as high as his regular salary.