Tuesday, May 13, 2008

National Fraud Unit Raids Trade and Labor Ministy in Olmert Investigation


Well, I guess there is blood in the water now? What was wrong with assuming Olmert was corrupt months ago and just looking for the evidence, why all of a sudden? We could all have been spared the past year of weenie "diplomatic" discussions about giving away what is left of our homeland.

May 12, 2008 20:57 | Updated May 13, 2008 16:45
Detectives raid government ministry in Olmert investigation

National Fraud Unit detectives raided the Industry, Trade and Labor Ministry in Jerusalem Tuesday afternoon in connection with the illicit funding investigation against Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

Detectives seized documents related to the case, police said.

According to police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld, investigators from the National Fraud Unit raided the offices "in connection with the Olmert investigation." Olmert headed the ministry from 2003 to 2006, before he became prime minister. He is suspected of illegally receiving funds from New York financier Morris Talansky.

On Monday, National Fraud Unit detectives raided the Jerusalem City Hall with a search warrant, seeking documents dating to Olmert's two terms as mayor from 1993 to 2003.

"The search is linked to the time that Olmert worked in the municipality, and to suspicions of receiving the funds," Israel Police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld confirmed.

A City Hall representative said he saw two police officers enter the building, but could not confirm seeing them leave with any documents or computers.

Meanwhile, Talansky was interrogated again at the National Fraud Unit's Bat Yam headquarters on Monday evening.

Talansky emerged from the backdoor of the police station after a long questioning session, saying "here we go" as he encountered several photographers and journalists.

He refused to comment on the investigation, occasionally flashing a smile as he entered a car, and was driven away from the police station.

In an interview aired on Sunday night on Channel 10, he denied bribing the prime minister, saying the hundreds of thousands of dollars he provided Olmert were meant as campaign contribution funds.

"I never thought in any way that the money that I gave him - it was for the purpose of his becoming mayor or electioneering - was in any way illegal or wrong. He was not the only one who came to America to ask for money for the election campaign, and so I thought it was legal," Talansky said.

Earlier on Monday, the former chief investigator into corruption at the State Comptroller's office, Cmdr. (ret.) Yaakov Borovsky, said he thought the ongoing criminal investigation into Olmert will conclude with an indictment.

Olmert committed himself to resigning should he be served with an indictment during a televised address to the nation last week.

Borovsky dismissed the idea that the investigation into Olmert was based only on illegal receipt of money, saying the the focus of National Fraud Unit investigators was on the far more serious charge of bribery.

He added that between 2003 and 2005, when police suspect that Olmert continued to receive money from Talansky, no elections were held, and suggested that the funds could not be solely meant to finance elections campaigns.

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