Israelis can rest assured that their former prime minister Ehud Olmert will not get lost in the corridors of his new home at Ma’asiyahu Prison.
That’s because former president Moshe Katsav will be on hand to help.
Katsav is five years into a seven-year sentence for rape, sexual assault and harassment of a number of female employees while tourism minister and president.
According to Channel 2 News, he told associates in prison that he was ready to serve as Olmert’s “coach” during his first stretch in jail.
Katsav reportedly expressed sorrow over the former PM’s imprisonment.
Ehud Olmert entered the Ramle prison Monday morning and began serving a 19-month sentence for bribery and obstruction of justice, becoming the country’s first former prime minister to serve time in prison. He was given the prisoner number 9032478.
Olmert was sentenced in 2014 to six years in prison on two separate charges of taking bribes in the early 2000s, as mayor of Jerusalem, in connection with the construction of Jerusalem’s massive Holyland residential complex. But in December, the Supreme Court reduced his sentence to 18 months in prison and exonerated him on one of the charges.
Last week, the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court tacked another month behind bars on to Olmert’s prison sentence, after he pleaded guilty — as part of a plea deal — to obstruction of justice in various cases against him. It was the first admission of wrongdoing by the former prime minister and Jerusalem mayor, who has consistently maintained his innocence throughout eight years of legal proceedings in various graft cases.
Also Monday, real estate developer Hillel Charney, who was convicted of money laundering and bribing Olmert, arrived at the Hermon Prison in the country’s north, where he will serve a 26-month sentence.