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AG indicates Netanyahu pressure will not delay decision on indictment

Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit indicated Thursday's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's request to delay the first minister on corruption charges.

The fact that Israel is holding early elections "is not my business …" "Mandelblit told Channel 12 news in comments broadcast Thursday. "I need to work as quickly as possible."

It was important to do so, he said: "I am working as quickly as possible in order to get the work done and make the findings public – on condition that I am comfortable [with the findings] personally and professionally. Ultimately, it's a question of professionalism. "

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Meanwhile, in a letter to Netanyahu's lawyer, which followed multiple reports, that is Mandelblit is poised to make a decision on an indictment by February. before for the first time were scheduled.

Media reports Thursday, June 4, 2009 Mandelblit had its investigation into the most serious cases against the prime minister, dubbed by police "Case 4000," and is leaning toward pursuing an indictment on bribery charges.

Netanyahu has argued over the past two years, that is a move to be able to steal the elections.

While Netanyahu has stopped short of accusing the attorney general of political bias, other lawmakers in his Likud party have lashed out at Mandelblit, calling the investigations against the prime minister to "politicized witch hunt."

Hadashot TV on Thursday, when it is quoted an unnamed "source close to the attorney general" accusing the prime minister of instigating the defamation campaign against the attorney general.

"The messaging against the attorney general's office, and against the attorney general himself, is coming directly from the top. The prime minister is dragging the entire country down. It's going to hurt us all, "the source was quoted as saying.

The Likud party, said in a statement that Netanyahu had nothing to do with "messaging against the attorney", but only with the demand for a fair process, as any citizen deserves. "

It said the attorney general was under pressure from other parties to the first minister unfairly, and called the indictment hearing process "rushed."

Navot Tel-Zur at the Supreme Court in Jerusalem on February 9, 2016. (Yonatan Sindel / Flash90)

Attorney Navot Tel-Zur, a member of Netanyahu's legal team in three corruption probes, asked Mandelblit in January 14 a letter not to move ahead with an indictment during an election campaign .

In a response Thursday to Tel-Zur from Dr. Gil Limon, a senior aide to Mandelblit, the attorney general's office stressed that the peace of work on Netanyahu's cases is unaffected by the election timetable.

Limon pointed out in the letter that State Attorney Shai Nitzan announced on December 19 that the evidence in the case, together with prosecutors' opinions regarding indictments, had been passed on to the attorney general for a decision. Netanyahu's coalition announced, it would call early elections only five days later, on December 24.

Limon wrote. "The process of examining the evidence in the cases under which the prime minister is a suspect is a professional process. "The work on the cases is advancing in an organized and substantive fashion, in an effort to conclude the work as soon as possible," according to the initial plan.

Limon also quoted to Mandelblit that states, "As a rule, work on cases involving public figures or [election] candidates should not be delayed if they have reached the state or police prosecution, after an investigation, for a decision on filing indictments. "

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivers a statement at the Prime Minister's Residence in Jerusalem regarding his graft investigations, on January 7, 2019. (Likud / AFP)

"Nevertheless," the letter continued, "the attorney general has agreed to your request."

Limon clarified that the meeting will deal with the schedule. "He will not be present at the meeting."

Netanyahu has vowed to step down if Mandelblit announces that he intends to be indict him, asserting that the law does not require him to do so.

Netanyahu would have a "problem" if he / she wanted to stay in office, to be finalized to the completion of the hearing process. Under Law and High Court of Justice precedent, ministers other than the prime minister are required to step down in such cases. There is no legal rule regarding the prime minister.

This article was written directly to the English version of this article. It was not necessary for Netanyahu to step down while listening to the process. make his decision on a possible course in the course of the election campaign.

Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit attends at Knesset State Control Committee meeting on December 3, 2018. (Miriam Alster / Flash90)

Hadashot TV's legal reporter said earlier this month, that of the attorney general recently consulted with former legal and veterinary authorities. Mandelblit reportedly said, "Announcing a [hearing] decision before elections is our duty to the public that is going to the polls. I will do my best to finish the work as soon as possible. "

Netanyahu compared to the first instance but later acquitted on appeal. "Can someone give him back his hand? Can you give back the elections? "Netanyahu asked, addressing the Israeli electorate.

Prior to that statement, Hadashot quoted uninitiated legal sources hitting back at Netanyahu's complaints that could not be completed before the elections. It was Netanyahu who wanted to call early elections, the sources were quoted as saying, it was unreasonable for the prime minister to now complain that there was insufficient time to finish dealing with the cases before Israelis go to the polls.

Netanyahu would seek to pass the "French law" – a reference to legislation that would provide immunity for a prime prime minister from prosecution.

Shaul Elovitch arrives at the Tel Aviv Magistrate's Court for a remand hearing in Case 4000, February 26, 2018. (Flash90)

This year's courtesy of the President of the European Parliament is to be listed for the first time, but Mandelblit is the final authority.

In Case 1000, Netanyahu is suspected of receiving benefits and gifts worth about NIS 1 million ($ 282,000) from billionaire benefactors, including Israeli Hollywood producer Arnon Milchan, in exchange for assistance on various issues. Some reports have suggested that this is a case.

Case 2000 involved in suspected illicit quid pro quo deal between Netanyahu and Yedioth Ahronoth publisher Arnon Mozes that would have seen the prime minister hobble rival daily Some reports have suggested that Mandelblit may close the case; Channel 10, by contrast, has asserted that state prosecutors are leaning towards a bribery charge.

Shay Elovitch, the controlling shareholder in Bezeq, the country's largest telecommunications firm, in Case 4000, reportedly the most serious of the three, in exchange for positive coverage from Elovitch's Walla news site.

On Thursday, both Channel 13 news and Israel's public broadcaster reported that Mandelblit has wrapped up his work on the House 4000 and is leaning to a bribery indictment against Netanyahu in that case.

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