JERUSALEM (JTA) — The fraud case against Sara Netanyahu, wife of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, is going to criminal arbitration.
The trial, which is scheduled to open in January, will continue to move forward in parallel, at the district attorney’s request, according to the Israeli public broadcaster Kan.
In a successful arbitration, Netanyahu would have to admit to some of the charges, which so far she has vehemently opposed, according to Kan.
The trial on charges of fraud and breach of trust, dubbed the Prepared Food Affair, opened last month in Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court.
Netanyahu is accused of ordering some $96,000 worth of private meals from high-end restaurants in 2010 and 2013 rather than using the cook at the prime minister’s residence to prepare meals, violating regulations that prevent those living in the residence from ordering meals from the outside when there is a cook on staff.
The investigation began in 2015 after the State Comptroller’s Office issued a report on the Netanyahu family household expenses.
The Netanyahus have denied any wrongdoing and accused Israel’s public broadcaster of airing “fake news” and “a campaign of character assassination.”