Haaretz Report on Jewish Billionaire Schlaff Stirs Up Austrian Media

Leading Austrian newspapers quote Haaretz Special Report on Martin Schlaff's financial connections to Israeli politicians.

A Haaretz special report on Martin Schlaff, a Jewish Austrian billionaire suspected of illicit funding of Israeli politicians, received a great deal of media attention in Austria on Thursday.

Martin Schlaff Alexander Tuma
Alexander Tuma

For the full Haaretz Special Report on Martin Schlaff click here

The highest circulating Austrian newspapers quoted large portions of the report by Haaretz, which exposed Schlaff's financial connections to Israeli politicians.

One popular newspaper, Kurier, reported "Billionaire Schlaff under suspicion." Der Standard wrote "Schlaff under the eyes of Justice." "Did Schlaff give $4.5 million in bribes?" wondered Die Presse.

Haaretz reported last week that investigators from the Israel Police national fraud squad recommended indicting Schlaff on suspicion of having bribed former prime minister Ariel Sharon by means of his sons. Schlaff allegedly transferred $4.5 million to Gilad and Omri Sharon's bank accounts.

A Haaretz investigation into Schlaff's affairs also uncovered a long list of other Israeli public figures who benefited from his millions, including former prime minister Ehud Olmert, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman and former interior minister Aryeh Deri.

The Austrian media also focused on Schlaff's dubious connections with the Austrian government.

"Sclaff's connections with the Austrian government now exposed," Austria newspaper reported.