Israeli police probe senior officials over German submarine graft affair

Source: Xinhua| 2017-09-04 19:05:47|Editor: ying
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JERUSALEM, Sept. 4 (Xinhua) -- Israeli police questioned several former senior officials on Monday over corruption in purchase deal of German submarines, said the police.

A former Israeli cabinet minister was among the questioned, whose name was undisclosed with a gag order.

Police spokeswoman Luba Samir added that a former deputy chief of the National Security Council, Avriel Bar Yosef, and an unnamed media consultant of a sitting government minister were also questioned.

The recent questionings came a day after six senior former officials were arrested, including David Sharan, a former chief of the office of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and ex-navy commander Admiral Eliezer Marom, the police confirmed on Sunday evening.

The police reportedly conducted searches in their homes.

In July, Germany postponed signing an agreement with Israel for the sale of three submarines in the wake of the ramifying corruption investigation, according to an Israeli official.

The investigation concerns possible fraud, bribery, breach of trust, tax evasion, and money laundering in a 2-billion-dollars deal between Israel and the German shipbuilding conglomerate ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems.

The deal, signed in 2016, had started to draw public attention after it emerged that David Shimron, 65, a personal lawyer for the Netanyahu family and Benjamin Netanyahu's cousin and confidant, also represented the local agent of ThyssenKrupp.

Shimron was also arrested and released in July after being investigated. The police said he is still a suspect but he was allowed to leave the country.

On July 21, Miki Ganor, the representative of German shipbuilder ThyssenKrupp in Israel and a key suspect in the affair, agreed to become a state witness. The deal was signed as he was held in custody.