Senior police and justice officials are expected in the coming days to go public with the latest probe into the financial conduct of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that reportedly involves suspicions of widespread money laundering.
Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit and head of the national Police Investigations and Intelligence Department, Meni Yitzhaki, will issue an official statement on the allegations that the prime minister was involved in a major money laundering scheme that could have foreign connections, Channel 2 reported Saturday.
A senior law enforcement official said the police believe they have enough to take the investigation public, Haaretz reported.
On Friday, Channel 10 reported that police were examining allegations that Netanyahu and a senior official in the justice system were involved in a “large-scale” corruption operation.
The allegations pertain to the transfer of “large sums” of money to one of Netanyahu’s family members “for non-political purposes,” Channel 2 reported.
Police officials have not yet pursued investigations outside Israel, but may do so in the future, the report said.
Netanyahu has dismissed recent vague reports in the Hebrew media about the allegations as being unfounded.
Opposition members over the weekend swiftly condemned Netanyahu over the fresh reports of his alleged financial wrongdoings, complete with warnings of Knesset reelections in the event he should be forced to step down as prime minister.
Zionist Union MK Erel Margalit claimed Friday that the prime minister was “spending 80 percent of his time on silencing suspicions and investigations… the current suspicion of receiving funds without connection to elections is a lot more than a suspicion. It is much more substantiated than what we’ve heard before.”
Opposition leader Isaac Herzog said that an alternative coalition “can be arranged” in the current Knesset if such a need should arise, though he cautioned that “authorities must [first] do their work” on the matter.
On Saturday, Meretz chairwoman Zehava Galon called on Netanyahu to resign over the “dubious and foul norms the prime minister serves to the public.”
“Every day, we hear of new cases, and these are not the norms that a prime minister should be instilling in the public. As far as I am concerned, he should have already resigned,” she told Channel 10 in an interview.
In a separate case, Mandelblit last month reportedly instructed employees in the state prosecutor’s office to look into allegations that Netanyahu in 2009 accepted 1 million euros (about $1.1 million) from accused French fraudster Arnaud Mimran.
In May, Israel’s state comptroller issued a critical report on Netanyahu’s foreign trips, some with his wife and children, from 2003 to 2005 when he was finance minister.