Sara Netanyahu indicted for fraudulently charging $100000 in meals to the state

The couple on a visit to the White House in March

Image The couple on a visit to the White House in March

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's wife, Sara, has been charged with fraud over the alleged misuse of state funds.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's wife, Sara, has been indicted for aggregated fraud and breach of trust over the misuse of public funds at their official residence. The indictment follows unsuccessful attempts to settle the matter outside court, with Sara Netanyahu refusing to pay back the amount she used for the meals and admit the allegations against her.

"The Jerusalem district prosecutor a short time ago filed charges against the prime minister's wife", the Justice Ministry said.

Sara Netanyahu acted "to circumvent the rules and conditions" governing the official residence "in order to fraudulently obtain state funding for various expenses for the accused and her family that were not supposed to be financed in this manner", the indictment said. In March, police questioned Netanyahu and his wife for an investigation into whether his government improperly awarded benefits to Israel's largest telecom company, Bezeq.

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A former deputy director of the prime minister's residence is also charged in the case.

Another investigation sees Netanyahu suspected of attempting to reach an agreement with the owner of Yediot Aharonot, a best-selling Israeli newspaper, for more favorable coverage.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appeared to dismiss the investigation a year ago.

The move represents the latest legal headache for leader Netanyahu and his family, as the authorities investigate the combative premier over allegations of corruption in a string of eye-catching cases. The Netanyahus have denied any wrongdoing, and say they are the victims of a political witch hunt and hostile media.

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