Former lawmaker Zoabi to be charged with fraud

Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit has decided to charge former Knesset member Hanin Zoabi of the Arab-Israeli Balad party with fraud offenses, pending a hearing.

The allegations pertain to financial irregularities in the Balad party, a hard-line Palestinian nationalist faction that makes up part of the Joint List party.

Zoabi is accused of forging documents that were submitted to the State Comptroller between 2013 and 2016. She is suspected of systematically deceiving the ombudsman by misrepresenting the source of millions of shekels the party had received.

Zoabi was branded an unpopular figure in Israel after she called for the dissolution of the State of Israel, labeled Israeli soldiers “murderers,” and sailed on the Turkish ship Mavi Marmara in 2010 in a bid to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza.

She announced her departure from political life in January 2019, to the cheers of Jewish lawmakers.

Joint List party member MK Hanin Zoabi in the Knesset plenum on July 11, 2016. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)