Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Israeli Religious Council - Raided

Jpost: Suspicion of corruption and mismanagement in Jerusalem's Religious Council sparked a National Fraud Squad raid yesterday to confiscate documents and computers. These were presumed to contain details on salaries, employment amenities, council car usage and the transfer of state money to non-profit organizations. The police did not question any council workers. According to sources in the council, the investigation is focusing on the period between 1998 and 2002, when Rabbi Yitzhak Ralbag, a National Religious Party member, and Yehoshua Polack, an Agudat Yisrael member, were respectively the chairman and deputy chairman of the council. One source said that the investigation was focusing on the illegal transfer of about NIS 3 million in Jerusalem Municipality funds to non-profit organizations. The money had been earmarked for charity before Pessah. Ralbag, who is currently responsible for marriage certificates in the absence of a chief rabbi of Jerusalem, denied any connection with the investigation. "They were looking for old computers and documents," said Ralbag. "They did not ask me any questions and they definitely did not investigate me." Ralbag was asked by the police to unlock his office in the Religious Council to allow for a search. Ralbag said his personal computer was not confiscated..........
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