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A-G likely to close case against ex-IDF chief

State prosecutors determine there is insufficient evidence to indict Gabi Ashkenazi in Harpaz affair

Former IDF chief of staff Gabi Ashkenazi in 2014 (Miriam Alster/Flash90)
Former IDF chief of staff Gabi Ashkenazi in 2014 (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein is expected to close the case against former IDF chief Gabi Ashkenazi after state prosecutors determined there was not enough evidence to indict him for his alleged involvement in a high-level corruption scandal, Channel 2 news reported Wednesday.

Weinstein’s decision, which was expected to be officially announced within a few weeks, would come against the recommendation of police, who in 2014 determined that there was enough evidence to charge Ashkenazi with breach of trust and delivering classified information to journalists.

In January 2013, Israel’s comptroller issued a scathing report stemming from a state investigation into Ashkenazi’s combative relationship with former defense minister Ehud Barak. The crux of the dispute revolved around a mid-2010 attempt to influence the appointment of the successor to Lt. Gen. Ashkenazi.

As chief of the General Staff from February 2007 to February 2011, Ashkenazi was found by the report to have acted in “a manner unworthy” of a senior officer in his collaboration with former officer Boaz Harpaz, who sought to besmirch Barak.

Barak has claimed Ashkenazi employed “criminal” tools “to thwart the legal process of appointing a [new] IDF chief of staff and against the political echelon.”

The report led to the police investigation into the matter. The director of the police’s investigative and intelligence department said at the time that even though some of Ashkenazi’s actions did not cross the threshold of criminality, they did “raise questions concerning the conduct of a public official, especially one who is in charge of the state’s security, in regard to the norms of conduct expected from such officials.”

 

 

 

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