Thursday, March 02, 2006

Israeli Bureacracy

Yuval Yoaz, Haaretz Correspondent, reports that;_

Almost two years have gone by since former attorney general Elyakim Rubinstein decided to indict Tal Zilberstein for his alleged role in illegal funding activities for Ehud Barak's 1999 election campaign, but charges have yet to be filed.

Zilberstein, who owns a strategic consultancy firm, is one of Acting PM Ehud Olmert's closest advisers.

The Barak campaign-financing scandal broke following a harsh report by then-state comptroller Eliezer Goldberg on violations of campaign finance laws in the 1999 ballot.

When questioned initially by Goldberg, Zilberstein refused to cooperate.

The file was passed on to Rubinstein, who published his decision 18 months later, in October 2003. Rubinstein wrote that the evidence gathered by police appeared to indicate that not only was Zilberstein aware of the NPOs' activities, but also had actively directed them. "Under such circumstances, it has been decided to indict him," Rubinstein wrote.

The decision was subject to a hearing, which, for reasons the Justice Ministry refuses to reveal, was delayed for a long time, and eventually took place in early 2005.

According to the Justice Ministry spokesman, "the file is with the State Prosecutor's Office for a final decision following the conducting of a hearing and discussions that were held in its wake, and in light of legal issues that have subsequently arisen. The state prosecution is aware of the fact that handling the case has taken a significant amount of time, and a decision, therefore, will be made in the near future."

I wonder sometimes why I refer to this as an "Israel advocacy blog".

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