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Reports: Police recommend indictments of Netanyahu

By:
  • By JOSEF FEDERMAN, Associated Press
Pictured:
  • FILE - In this Sunday, Feb. 11, 2018 file photo, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu chairs the weekly cabinet meeting at the Prime Minister's office in Jerusalem. Israeli media reports Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2018 say police recommending Netanyahu indictment on corruption charges, including bribery. (Ronen Zvulun, Pool via AP, File)

By JOSEF FEDERMAN, Associated Press

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israeli police on Tuesday recommended that Benjamin Netanyahu be indicted in a pair of corruption cases, media reported, in an embarrassing blow to the embattled prime minister that is likely to fuel calls for him to step down.

The recommendations marked a dramatic ending to a months-long investigation into allegations that Netanyahu accepted tens of thousands of dollars in lavish gifts from a Hollywood mogul and offered to give preferential treatment to a newspaper publisher in exchange for favorable coverage. Netanyahu has repeatedly denied wrongdoing.

The recommendations now go to Attorney General Avihai Mendelblit, who will review the material before deciding whether to file charges. Netanyahu can remain in office during that process, which could drag on for months.

But with a cloud hanging over his head, he could soon find himself facing calls to step aside. During similar circumstances a decade ago, Netanyahu, as opposition leader, urged then-Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to resign during a police investigation, saying a leader “sunk up to his neck in interrogations” could not govern properly.

For months, police have been investigating two cases.

In one probe, called File 1000, Netanyahu reportedly received over $100,000 in gifts including champagne and expensive cigars from Hollywood mogul Arnon Milchan, Australian billionaire James Packer and other wealthy supporters.

The other is over secret talks with the publisher of Israeli daily Yediot Ahronot. In recordings obtained by police, Netanyahu allegedly requested positive coverage in exchange for reining in a free pro-Netanyahu daily.

Channels 10 and 2 TV and the Jerusalem Post and Haaretz newspapers reported police recommended indictments in both cases. The attorney general will now review their conclusions and decide whether to file charges.

Police were expected to make a formal announcement later Tuesday, and Netanyahu was expected to issue a response.

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Tyler Moody

After spending the last few years in television and radio, Tyler Moody comes to REALShreveport.com to head the sports’ department. An Elysian Fields, Texas and Shreveport native, Tyler has followed sports in the area his entire life. From a young age, his love for pure competition grew year after year. “Moody” attended high school in Shreveport at the athletic powerhouse that is Evangel Christian Academy. He was a starting pitcher and garnered multiple all-state accolades along with a 2009 state championship as an Eagle. He has taken the knowledge gained on the field and applied it to his career in sports. An avid fantasy sports player, Moody has become the go-to guy for fantasy talk and advice in the Ark-La-Tex. Now, he hopes to continue to grow REALShreveport.com into Shreveport’s go-to for area sports.

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