Police Chief Denies Cops Leaked Details of Olmert Graft Probe

AG begins investigating who gave newspaper transcripts of questioning of Olmert and witness Uri Messer.

Israel Police Commissioner Dudu Cohen on Monday denied police responsibility in leaking to the public details on the corruption investigation being carried out against Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

Transcripts of the questioning of Olmert and attorney Uri Messer were published in the press last week, leading the premier's lawyer, Eli Zohar, to file a complaint with Attorney General Menachem Mazuz. Mazuz this week began to investigate the source of the leaks.

"I completely reject these accusations," Cohen said, in response to Olmert's lawyer's suggestions that police were to blame for the leaks.

Police Maj. Gen. Yohanan Danino, head of the police investigations and intelligence division, said on Friday that the police are willing to undergo any test, including polygraphs, to locate the source of the leaks.

Danino said that following publication of the first transcripts of the interrogation in Maariv on Sunday, he approached State Prosecutor Moshe Lador and Mazuz to discuss the possibility of locating those responsible for the leaks, including the administering of polygraph tests to police.

Olmert's media adviser, Amir Dan, said last week in response to Danino's remarks: "If law enforcement officials have nothing to hide, let them be so good as to immediately open an investigation of the tendentious leakes instead of releasing baseless statements."

Dan said the fact that the leaks came out after the police had released the material to others proved nothing, since if the police were behind them they would wait until the material had been released so as to hide their alleged role.