The State Prosecution will drop the main charges in a case it is trying to build against Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman involving funneling money through shell companies, Israel’s Channel 2 reported on Tuesday night.
The prosecutor will still press charges in a minor claim of breach of trust, the channel reported.
The prosecutor reportedly decided to drop the case after a key witness intimated she would withdraw her testimony and take the stand in favor of Liberman.
The woman, a lawyer based in Cyprus, said in her second testimony that her initial statements had been extracted through the use of force, and were sentences “planted” by those questioning her.
Police suspect Liberman used shell companies to illegally receive funds while serving as Knesset member. According to the case, between 1999 and 2006 millions of shekels were transferred to the foreign minster and his daughter by people in Israel and overseas.
In a smaller criminal case, Liberman is likely to be charged with a breach of trust. According to the prosecution, the nomination of former ambassador to Belarus, Ze’ev Ben Aryeh, involved a conflict of interest. Ben Aryeh, the prosecution notes, was an acquaintance of Liberman’s, and was chosen by a committee headed by the foreign minister’s right-hand man, deputy minister Danny Ayalon of the Yisrael Beytenu party.
Liberman’s attorney told Channel 2 the foreign minister did not speak up in favor of Ben Aryeh in ministerial meetings that followed the screening process, and that proving breach of trust would be hard, if not impossible.