JERUSALEM (VINnews) — Yaakov Litzman has cut a deal with Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit, becoming the second Charedi MK to do so in the past few weeks, after a deal was reached with Shas MK Aryeh Deri who resigned his Knesset seat as part of a plea bargain.
Litzman, the former minister and UTJ leader, will plead guilty to breach of public confidence in the Malka Leifer matter, along with a token 3,000 shekel fine and a conditional prison sentence, but other more severe charges, including obstruction of justice, will be dropped. He will not be charged in the “Hama’adaniyah” episode.
In addition, Litzman will resign from the Knesset without being accused of moral turpitude
Mr. Litzman was suspected of using his influence as health minister to protect private individuals at the expense of public safety. He was health minister from 2015-17 and from 2019-20.
He allegedly stalled the extradition to Australia of accused pedophile Malka Leifer. He is suspected of pressuring a top psychiatric official to falsely declare Leifer mentally unfit to stand trial. She was deported last January and faces 74 separate charges of child sexual abuse.
In response to the news, the Magen organization issued a statement:
“To our regret, today marks the close of a difficult period that caused a great deal of distress to the victims of Malka Leifer. We identify with the anger of the heroic victims at this plea bargain, and even though according to Israel law they are not considered party to this case, there was room to have listened to their opinions. We hope that this admission will put an end to these serious actions, and that next time around, politicians will realize that they are not above the law.”
Mandelblit is set to retire at the end of this month, and has been working finalizing on multiple plea bargain deals with high-level politicians before the end of his service.