Police Recommend Charges Against Six in Submarine Scandal

YERUSHALAYIM -
Israel Navy submarine. (Israel navy)

Police on Thursday recommended that prosecutors file charges against six individuals for bribery and influence peddling after completing its investigation of “Case 3000,” the investigation into a bribery scandal surrounding Israel’s purchase of submarines from Germany. The six have worked as advisers to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu or as top staff in the defense establishment. Netanyahu is not considered a suspect in the case.

The six include former Deputy Director of the National Security Council Avriel Bar-Yosef; retired IDF Colonel and former head of Shayetet 13 Shai Brosh; former Israel Navy commander Elitzer Marom; former Netanyahu confidant and attorney David Shimron; former Minister Modi Zandberg; and former Netanyahu bureau chief David Sharan.

Netanyahu’s current attorney, Yitzchak Molcho, was not named as a suspect. The charges against the suspects include varying degrees of bribery, fraud, conspiracy to commit a crime, money laundering, and tax offenses.

All six have been detained and questioned in the scandal, and are accused of receiving bribes and other benefits in order to execute a sale of submarines by Germany’s ThyssenKrupp to the Israel Navy. Much of the evidence in the case was supplied by Israeli businessman Miki Ganor, who represented ThyssenKrupp. Ganor agreed to a plea deal in which he admitted to being involved in the bribery scandal. He is serving a year in prison and paid a NIS 10 million fine.

Ganor testified about several key figures, including Shimron, an attorney who represented ThyssenKrupp’s interests. Police believe that Shimron worked to convince various officials to agree to the sale, for which his firm would net a large commission. Zandberg, meanwhile, said that he had accepted a NIS 100,000 payment from Ganor, but that the payment was not connected to the submarine deal. He did, however, discuss the deal with Ganor, police said. Marom, meanwhile, is accused of working with Shimron and Ganor to execute the sale.

In a statement Thursday, Shimron said that he had “committed no crime,” and he believed that prosecutors would not pursue the case against him.

Jack Chen, an attorney for Bar-Yosef, said that the police statement on the case “is contaminated with distortion to confirm a police predisposition to pursue charges in the case. We have no doubt that the charges against my client will fall when professional prosecutors examine this case.”

Eyal Rozovsky, the attorney for Marom, said that “the police recommendation has no formal standing. The police have made their statement, now we will see what the prosecution does.”