Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is currently facing three investigations over alleged corruption, was questioned again by police on 10 July in a case involving Israel’s largest telecoms firm, Reuters reported. The police say Netanyahu awarded regulatory favors to Bezeq Telecom Israel in return for favorable coverage of him and his wife on a news website owned by the company.
Netanyahu, Bezeq and its owner have all denied wrongdoing. In an investigation known as Case 4000, Netanyahu faces allegations that while serving as communications minister between 2014 and 2017, he secured regulatory favours worth hundreds of millions of dollars for Bezeq Telecom Israel, the country’s main telecoms company, controlled by businessman Shaul Elovitch.
He is also alleged to have intervened with regulators in return for positive coverage of himself and his wife, Sara Netanyahu, from Walla, a news site also controlled by Elovitch. Netanyahu denies all wrongdoing, and claims all corruption cases pending against him are fraudulent and concocted by his political opponents and enemies in the media. Israeli police questioned Netanyahu in the prime minister’s official residence in Jerusalem, and have yet to make a recommendation about charges in Case 4000.
In a brief statement that gave no details about the investigation, a police spokesman said Netanyahu was questioned for several hours at the prime minister’s residence in Jerusalem by the police anti-corruption unit. In the two other cases, in which police already recommended in February that Netanyahu be charged with bribery, the final decision regarding whether to prosecute the prime minister rests with the Israeli attorney general – a decision that could be months away. In Case 1000, Netanyahu is suspected of accepting bribery gifts worth almost USD 300,000 from wealthy businessmen.
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