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Israel interior minister questioned in tax fraud case

May 31, 2017 at 1:34 pm

Israel’s Minister of the Interior, Aryeh Deri, and his wife, Yaffa, were questioned by police on Monday in connection with a corruption probe, Israeli media has reported.

Senior officials from the Ministry for the Development of the Negev and the Galilee were amongst the 14 people who were arrested on the same day.

Deri and his wife are being investigated as part of a Tax Authority investigation into money laundering and false income and assets reporting, including unreported properties owned by him and his family.

The minister took up the role of head of the interior ministry in January, more than 20 years after resigning from the same post over corruption charges for which he was later indicted and convicted. In 2000, he was sentenced to three years in prison; he spent nearly two years behind bars.

Read: Israeli politicians and media are allies in corruption

As a result of the charges, Deri was banned from public service for seven years.

“The Interior Minister has said from the beginning that he is willing to fully co-operate and answer all questions. He trusts the law enforcement system to do its job responsibly and properly,” a statement released on Deri’s behalf said.