State files fraud, breach of trust charges against Yisrael Beiteinu chairman; amended indictment to pursue moral turpitude conviction. Lieberman: Truth will come out in court
Case No. 57926/12/12– The State vs. Avigdor Lieberman: Former Foreign Minister and Yisrael Beiteinu Chairman Avigdor Lieberman was officially indicted Sunday for fraud and breach of trust.
The State filed the charges with the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court. The Prosecution will pursue a moral turpitude conviction as well, which – if applied – will make it virtually impossible for Lieberman to run for public office.
The State amended the original indictment against Lieberman; but while the charges of fraud and breach of trust remained unchanged, the new indictment aggressively pursues the moral turpitude clause, by presenting new details implicating Lieberman of abuse of authority.
Much of the breach of trust case focuses on Lieberman’s alleged involvement in the promotion of former Israeli Ambassador to Belarus Zeev Ben Aryeh within the Diplomatic Corps – to the post of ambassador to Latvia.
The promotion was allegedly promised to Ben Aryeh after he gave Lieberman secret details pertaining to a criminal investigation against him in a case which has since been closed.
Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein presented the amended indictment on Thursday.
‘The truth will come out in court’
According to sources in the State Prosecutor’s Office, the revisions were made possible following the deposition of Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon.
Ayalon, who will not be a part of Yisrael Beiteinu’s future Knesset roster, is expected to be the State’s key witness against his former boss.
Other names on the Prosecution’s witness list include former Foreign Ministry Director general Yossi Gal, who is currently the Ambassador to France; and former head of the Foreign Ministry’s Personnel Directorate Shimon Roded, who is currently the Ambassador to Thailand.
Lieberman has repeatedly professed his innocence: “I say again – I have not committed any criminal offence. I’ve asked the Knesset to remove my parliamentary immunity and I wish for nothing more than for this to be made clear in a court of law.
“The rumors about a plea bargain are not true. The truth will come out in court.”