Prosecution tells court there was no illicit hacking by police in Netanyahu cases

State prosecutors announce that they have not found any evidence of illicit phone hacking during the police investigations into alleged misdeeds by former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

“No actions were taken when there was no court order,” the prosecution tells the Jerusalem District Court, which had ordered a hiatus in the trial proceedings in order to investigate claims of widespread illicit hacking by police using NSO Group’s powerful Pegasus software.

The prosecution presented to the court the interim findings of an investigation into the issue led by Deputy Attorney General Amit Marari, along with former officials from the Shin Bet and Mossad.

However, the investigators ask the court for three more days to complete their probe.

Judges are set to deliberate when to resume proceedings in the case.

According to an explosive report last week, police used Pegasus software to hack into dozens of phones without a court order, including that of Ilan Yeshua, the former CEO of Walla and currently a top witness in Case 4000 against Netanyahu; Avner Netanyahu, the son of the former prime minister; Shlomo Filber, a former Communications Ministry director general; Iris Elovitch, the wife of Shaul Elovitch, the former controlling shareholder of Bezeq (both are defendants in Case 4000); former Bezeq CEOs Dudu Mizrachi and Stella Hendler; former Walla editor-in-chief Aviram Elad, and other journalists at the news site.

In that case, one of the three graft cases for which the former prime minister is on trial, Netanyahu is alleged to have advanced regulatory decisions as communications minister and prime minister that immensely benefited Elovitch. In exchange, Netanyahu allegedly was given what amounted to editorial control over Elovitch’s Walla news site. The former premier denies the charges against him.

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