Top Israel Basketball Coach Questioned in Tax Evasion Case

Maccabi Tel Aviv head coach Pini Gershon was summoned by officials at the Income Tax Authority.

The head coach of Israel's most celebrated basketball team was summoned by authorities on Tuesday for questioning on possible tax evasion charges.

Pini Gershon, who coaches the perennial champion basketball club Maccabi Tel Aviv, spoke with investigators at the Income Tax Authority on Tuesday. He is the latest in a series of basketball officials, including coaches and referees in Israel's Super League, who is suspected of illicit activity in connection with the failed investment scheme run by the late manager of Maccabi Tel Aviv, Moni Fanan.

Fanan committed suicide last October by hanging himself in his Tel Aviv apartment.

Earlier on Tuesday, referee Yaron Zarif was also detained by authorities for questioning related to tax evasion allegations. He was released a short time later.

The Income Tax Authority did not specify whether Zarif was also linked to the Fanan affair.

Last week, veteran basketball referee Sami Bachar was questioned by the Income Tax Authority on suspicion of failing to declare income he received as a referee at games abroad. Bachar is also suspected of involvement in Fanan's investment activities.

Following several hours of questioning, Bachar was arrested and subsequently released on NIS 550,000 bail set by the Tel Aviv Magistrate's Court.