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Netanyahu's lawyer fires back at police recommendation

Netanyahu faces a possible indictment on corruption charges [Getty]

Date of publication: 14 February, 2018

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The police recommendation against Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu now goes to Attorney General Avihai Mendelblit, who will decide whether to file corruption charges.

Binyamin Netanyahu's lawyer said on Wednesday that the police recommendation of corruption charges is based on "false" information.

The lawyer, Amit Hadad, said the sums allegedly received by Netanyahu were "inflated, incorrect, unfactual and simply unacceptable".

Hadad added that Netanyahu "didn't receive bribes at all. Not in a single day, not in a year, not at all".

Another lawyer, Yaakov Weinroth, last month said in an interview that "any reasonable person knows that there is nothing remotely criminal involved when a close friend gives his friend a gift of cigars".

The corruption charges revolve around two cases – known informally as Case 1000 and 2000 – that entail accepting $214,000 in gifts from Hollywood moguls including Arnon Milchan and striking a deal with the Israeli daily Yediot Ahronot for favourable coverage.

Netanyahu is reportedly a cigar aficionado, and smokes more than $5,000 worth of them each month, according to Channel 2.

Netanyahu's allies from his governing Likud party are rallying to the prime minister's defence, following news of the police reccomendation.

Opposition party members, including Labour party leader Avi Gabbay, are calling on Netanyahu to resign.

The recommendations now go to Israeli Attorney General Avihai Mendelblit, who will review the material before deciding whether to file charges.

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