[QODLink]
Archive
Police suspect Sharon took bribe

Israeli police have evidence which they believe will prove that  the Israeli prime minister's family received a bribe of $3 million from an Austrian billionaire, a police spokesman says.

Last Modified: 03 Jan 2006 22:04 GMT
A corruption scandal has dogged Ariel Sharon

Israeli police have evidence which they believe will prove that  the Israeli prime minister's family received a bribe of $3 million from an Austrian billionaire, a police spokesman says.

Mickey Rosenfeld, the police spokesman told AFP on Tuesday, the evidence had been gathered in late December during a police raid of Martin Shlaff, an Austrian financer's family house in Israel.

Rosenfeld said: "On 22 December, 2005, the national police investigation unit searched Shlaff's house (in Israel) and confiscated documents, paperwork, phones and his computers.

"We suspect that there could be proof within Shlaff's computer data that the sum of three million dollars was transferred to the Sharon family."

However, although the police have actual possession of the computer hardware, they have been prevented from examining the data by a temporary court order issued after an appeal by Shlaff's lawyers, Rosenfeld said.

"Since 22 December, the national unit for investigations has not been able to confirm these suspicions after Shlaff turned to the courts who have temporarily denied police access to Shlaff's computer data."

Corruption scandal

The bribe is thought to be connected to a long-running corruption scandal which has plagued the family of Ariel Sharon over illegal campaign contributions during the 1999 elections.

Officials in Prime Minister Sharon's office refused to comment on the report, which was first broadcast late on Tuesday by private Channel 10 television.

Omri Sharon pleaded guilty to
charges of falsifying documents

Channel 10 showed footage of a police document which had been presented to a Tel Aviv district court in which it outlined evidence of the alleged bribe.

The money is thought to be linked to an unresolved corruption scandal in which Sharon was suspected of receiving a $1.5 million loan from South African businessman Cyril Kern that was allegedly used to refund contributions to his 1999 leadership campaign after they were deemed irregular.

The news came just hours after Omri, one of Sharon's sons, resigned from parliament ahead of his sentencing for providing false testimony and falsifying documents in a case linked to the financing of one of his father's leadership campaigns.

Omri, who pleaded guilty to the charges in November, is due to be sentenced on 23 January.

Source:
AFP
Topics in this article
People
Featured on Al Jazeera
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Featured
About 500,000 participated around the globe in the Peoples Climate March, and Al Jazeera spoke to some in New York.
Separatist movements in Spain, Belgium and Italy may face headwinds following Scotland's decision to stay in the UK.
A fishing trawler carrying 500 migrants across the Mediterranean was rammed by another boat, causing hundreds to drown.
Anti-immigration Sweden Democrats party - with roots in the neo-Nazi movement - recently won 12.9 percent of the vote.
Palestinian doctor who lost three daughters in previous Gaza war is fighting to bring 100 wounded kids to Canada.