Rehovot Mayor Admits to Contract Scheme

Rehovot Mayor Yehoshua "Shuky" Forer was convicted yesterday of breach of trust as part of a plea agreement reached in November.

According to the original indictment, the Rehovot municipality awarded work costing about NIS 3.75 million to a public works contractor without issuing a tender in exchange for paying off NIS 93,000 in outstanding debts for Forer from his 1998 election campaign. Forer was originally charged with accepting a bribe, conspiracy to commit a crime, fraud, breach of trust and related offenses. He was also charged with failing to report a bank account used for his election campaign. As part of the plea bargain Forer admitted to only a small part of the charges and refused to concede that his actions were deceptive.

At the sentencing hearing on February 11 the state will ask the Petah Tikva Magistrate's Court to impose community service, probation and a fine, as well as to define Forer's crime as one of moral turpitude, thus forcing him to resign his post.