30 senior Israeli officials detained in corruption sweep


JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israeli police have detained 30 senior officials accused of corruption, including Deputy Interior Minister Faina Kirshenbaum.

The officials, who where detained Wednesday morning after a yearlong investigation, also include a former government minister and senior officials in government ministries, in addition to mayors, heads of NGOs, union chiefs and officers in government corporations. Documents and computers were also confiscated from the officials.

Kirshenbaum is a member of the right-wing Israel Beiteinu party, which dismissed the charges as a “witch hunt,” according to the Times of Israel.

The officials are accused of accepting bribes and illegally funneling funds to NGOs, according to reports. In exchange, the NGOs allegedly gave jobs to people close to the officials.

The names of the officials were to be revealed Wednesday.

“The covert investigation revealed a calculated method wherein the suspects and their representatives unlawfully transferred, using their powers as public officials, large sums of public funds to [various] bodies and authorities, in exchange for large benefits for them or their associates, including appointments, payments and more,” a police statement said, according to the Times of Israel.


Recommended from JTA