Israeli police recommend bribery charges against Netanyahu confidant

David Shimron, the prime minister’s cousin and family lawyer, laundered money and bribed officials, according to the police report, which recommended indicting others as well.

By Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News

The police finished their corruption investigation into Israel’s multi-billion-dollar submarine deal with Germany, and recommended Thursday that state prosecutors serve indictments, against six public officials, including David Shimron, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s lawyer and confidant.

The charges include bribery and money laundering.

Although Netanyahu was intensively questioned several times in the so-called ‘submarine affair,’ also known as “Case 3000,” he was never a suspect and was never interviewed under caution about the deal, which he has insisted was made in good faith.

The prime minister has claimed all along that he didn’t know about any alleged wrongdoings, nor about the relationship Shimron allegedly had with one of the main suspects, Michael Ganor, German submarine-maker ThyssenKrupp’s representative in Israel, who eventually turned state’s witness during the investigation.

The police believe Shimron used his position to help Ganor seal the deal, by which Israel would pay some $2 billion to ThyssenKrupp for three new Dolphin-class submarines, with Ganor making a very substantial commission.

Shimron received NIS 270,000 to “open doors and influence public officials” for Ganor, police say, and recommend that he be charged with facilitating bribery, money laundering and fraudulently receiving goods under aggravating circumstances.

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Shimron immediately put out a statement protesting his innocence.

“At the end of the day, it’s the State Prosecutor’s Office that decides and not the police. Since I committed no crime – in my opinion and on the basis of all the details I know of the matter – in the end the case will be closed.”

The recommended charges against the others range from bribery, fraud and breach of trust, to conspiracy to commit a crime and tax offenses. All the suspects served in senior positions in the military or politics. They include:

-Brig. Gen. (ret.) Avriel Bar-Yosef, deputy head of the National Security Council and director of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

-Maj. Gen. (ret.) Eliezer Marom, former head of Israel’s navy.

-Eliezer Zandberg, former Science and Technology minister and current head of the United Israel Appeal.

-David Sharan, Netanyahu’s bureau chief between 2014-2016.

-Brig. Gen (res.) Shai Brosh is the former commander of the elite Shayetet 13 naval commando unit.