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Yair Netanyahu said to call police ‘Gestapo’ during questioning in Bezeq case

In transcript published by Channel 13, prime minister’s son, known for crude online behavior, accuses investigators of acting like criminals

Then-prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, right, his wife, Sara, and their son Yair, during a meeting with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte (not pictured), at Netanyahu's official residence in Jerusalem on December 8, 2013. (Haim Zach/GPO/Flash90/File)
Then-prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, right, his wife, Sara, and their son Yair, during a meeting with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte (not pictured), at Netanyahu's official residence in Jerusalem on December 8, 2013. (Haim Zach/GPO/Flash90/File)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s son accused police of acting like the infamous Nazi Gestapo interrogation unit during questioning last year in a high-profile corruption investigation concerning the Bezeq telecom giant, according to a report Monday.

“You’re the Gestapo police, you’re questioning me in order to put pressure on my parents, exactly like a crime organization,” Yair Netanyahu told investigators, according to the transcripts published Monday by Channel 13 news.

The comments were made last year as the younger Netanyahu was questioned by police in so-called Case 4000, in which the prime minister is accused of giving regulatory favors to Bezeq controlling shareholder Shaul Elovitch in exchange for favorable coverage for Netanyahu and his family on the Walla news site, which Elovitch also owned.

Netanyahu and his wife Sara are suspected of having the site kill stories that put the family, including Yair, in a poor light.

“The journalists are shitheads. The Walla news site is leftist, its more like Wallahu Akbar,” Yair Netanyahu reportedly told investigators, referring to the Arabic phrase for “God is great.”

Police investigators arrive at the entrance to the Prime Minister’s Residence in Jerusalem on November 19, 2017, to interrogate Benjamin Netanyahu. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Police subsequently dubbed the March 18 outburst “the Yair Netanyahu horror show,” the report said.

During the questioning, the prime minister’s son told police that he had poor memory and downplayed his role in the case. His mother Sara Netanyahu was also questioned by police in the affair.

Police Chief Roni Alsheich (left), Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (C) and Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan at a welcoming ceremony held in Alsheich’s honour, at Prime Minister’s office in Jerusalem, on December 3, 2015. (Miriam Alster/FLASH90)

Benjamin Netanyahu is facing indictments, pending a hearing, in the Bezeq-Walla affair and two other corruption cases.

A statement released on behalf of Yair Netanyahu did not deny the content of the report, but decried the regular leaks which have come out of the probes.

“Another leak from the investigation. We would like to remind the public that leaking transcripts of a police investigation is a criminal offense that carries a three-year jail sentence,” the statement read.

Yair Netanyahu has developed a reputation as a fierce and often undiplomatic defender of his father and government policies on social media, often engaging in online spats with journalists and others.

Screenshot of a cartoon, featuring George Soros, posted by Yair Netanyahu, son of Israel’s prime minister, September 8, 2017. (Facebook)

In December 2018, he was briefly banned from Facebook for making anti-Muslim comments. That same month he was censured by a judge for using crude language while being cross-examined during a libel case he filed against an activist. He also called the activist’s supporters, who protested outside the courtroom, “brownshirts,” referring to Nazi thugs.

A year earlier he came under fire for posting an anti-Semitic meme showing Jewish philanthropist George Soros as pulling the strings behind the investigations into his father.

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