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State to further investigate in Netanyahu trial after search of witness’s phone

Avi Alkalay, former editor at Walla news, arrives for a hearing at the Tel Aviv Magistrate's Court, on March 10, 2021. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)
Avi Alkalay, former editor at Walla news, arrives for a hearing at the Tel Aviv Magistrate's Court, on March 10, 2021. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

Prosecutors inform the Jerusalem District Court that they plan to further investigate after new evidence was found on the phone of a key state’s witness in former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s corruption trial.

In a filing with the court, prosecutors say they’ve summoned former Walla news editor Avi Alkalay for questioning in the coming days regarding correspondence between him and the website’s ex-CEO Ilan Yeshua, who has been testifying in the case. Alkalay is also a witness in the case.

According to prosecutors, the correspondence involves “issues that Alkalay addressed in his investigation.”

They also say the investigation won’t impact the timing of the trial, noting he is not set to testify for some time.

The trial is set to resume on September 13, following a court order that defense attorneys be provided with new evidence gleaned from messages and emails on Yeshua’s phone.

Yeshua is the first witness to give testimony in Netanyahu’s trial. He is a top witness in Case 4000, in which Netanyahu is alleged to have abused his powers when he served as both premier and communications minister from 2014 to 2017.

Netanyahu, who is now opposition leader, faces charges of bribery, fraud and breach of trust in the case. He was also indicted on fraud and breach of trust charges in two other cases. The ex-premier denies any wrongdoing.

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