Haifa Magistrate Court on Wednesday convicted the former mayor of Hadera of three counts of bribery, and sentenced him to eight months in prison.
Yisrael Sadan also received a seven-month suspended sentence and ordered to pay NIS 60,000 in fines.
According to the charges, when Sadan was elected mayor in 2003 he held negotiations with council members to have them join his coalition, offering them personal favors in exchange.
One of the council members who took advantage of these favors was acting Hadera Mayor Avraham Baldov, a member of United Torah Judaism.
In one of the incidents, Sadan and Baldov offered Mordechai Angel, a council member, a five-year term in the municipality for a salary of NIS 10,000 . In return, Sadan promised to cover Angel's party's debts, which reached NIS 150,000.
In another incident, Sadan offered Eli Gamliel, Angel, and Yoel Yehoshuah public positions and personal favors in return for their inclusion in Sadan's coalition. The three were also convicted and fined.
Judge Ilan Schiff ruled that the defendants exploited their public positions. Schiff also said that because of Sadan's position of authority, his background in the police department, and his responsibilities as mayor, he should have prevented the bribery deals.
Sadan's attorneys said his actions were out of concern for the city of Hadera. They maintain that the deals were done in order to build a stable coalition for Hadera so that they could improve the city's economic situation.
Yael Grossman, one of Sadan's attorneys, said in response to the ruling that "the court did not take into consideration that Sadan did not pocket the money, but used it for the good of Hadera. In addition, the court did not take into account Sadan's background. We will consider an appeal to the conviction and punishment."
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