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Sunday, May 11, 2008

Messer gave Olmert cash in envelopes

Prime Minister Ehud K. Olmert's lawyer and former law partner Uri Messer has testified that he gave Olmert large amounts of cash in envelopes that he received from 'fund raiser' Morris (Moshe) Talansky according to a report in Sunday's (Hebrew) Ma'ariv. This accords with what Talansky told police during questioning.

Talansky told police that he sent Olmert money "for years" in cash, checks and wire transfers, that were delivered through Messer and through Shula Zaken, Olmert and Messer's one-time secretary and until recently Olmert's bureau chief. But Talansky adds, "If the money was used for improper purposes, or was not reported to the State Comptroller, or if other crimes were committed, it was without my knowledge."

As I reported on Friday, Messer may become a State's witness in the case, since Olmert has attempted to transfer responsibility for the illegal payments to him.

Maybe Olmert was just trying to avoid paying value added tax? (Sorry for the non-Israelis who aren't likely to get that quip. Many Israelis avoid evade paying value added tax by making payment in cash and not requesting a receipt. As you might imagine, the recipient of such payments typically also avoids paying income tax on them. A win-win situation for everyone except the general public).


At 9:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In Hebrew, another scoop from Yoav Yitzchak:

Olmert suspected of receiving bribes from businessman Moshe Reich

Never-ending story.

At 11:22 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Almost every one in Israel pays for everything in cash. No one really likes the extra taxes. Tax evasion and its handmaiden, corruption wouldn't be as serious a problem if the taxes weren't so punitive in the first place.

At 2:21 PM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...

Shy Guy,

Remember the Hebrew letter I mentioned? That was one of the names in it.


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