Dinitz Pledges Full Cooperation with Police Inquiry into Finances

Jewish Agency Chairman Simcha Dinitz says he and the Jewish Agency will cooperate fully with a police investigation into alleged financial irregularities at the agency.

The investigation was triggered by a formal complaint from Likud Knesset member Limor Livnat following a report by the Jewish Agency comptroller on the agency’s financial affairs that was made public in February.

The report was prompted, in part, by highly publicized charges that Dinitz misused Jewish Agency credit cards, including for personal business. The charges were an embarrassment to the agency, which is the largest recipient of funds collected in the United States by the United Jewish Appeal and elsewhere by Keren Hayesod.

The comptroller cited financial irregularities but essentially blamed lax bookkeeping practices at the Jewish Agency.

In response, the agency’s legal adviser issued an official statement saying that no bad faith was intended by Dinitz and that no had rectified any irregularities that might have occurred.

“The Jewish Agency and Simcha Dinitz have nothing to hide, and therefore are cooperating fully with the investigation,” an agency spokesman said Sunday.

Dinitz has given instructions to Jewish Agency employees to extend their fullest cooperation to the probe, the spokesman said.

Sources close to Dinitz stress that no new evidence or information has surfaced since the report, and that the police were obligated to respond to the complaint, which they charge was a politically motivated move against Dinitz, a Laborite.

Because of the Passover holiday, the JTA Daily News Bulletin will not be published Wednesday, April 7, or Thursday, April 8.

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