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Morris Talansky


Former Israeli PM Ehud Olmert has been sentenced to eight months in jail for fraud and breach of trust, a Jerusalem court rules.

Ehud Olmert was convicted at a retrial in March of accepting illegal payments from an American businessman while he served as mayor of Jerusalem and trade minister.

In 2014, Ehud Olmert was sentenced to six years in prison for accepting bribes.

Ehud Olmert has denied any wrongdoing and will remain free until his appeals against both convictions are heard.Ehud Olmert sentenced in Israel

A Supreme Court decision on the first appeal is expected in the next couple of months.

If he is unsuccessful, Ehud Olmert will become the first former head of government in Israel to be jailed.

Ehud Olmert served as Israel’s prime minister from 2006 to 2009.

He was forced to resign amid a flurry corruption allegations, which ended his political career and disrupted the peace process with the Palestinians.

In 2012, Ehud Olmert was acquitted of fraud, concealing fraudulent earnings and breach of trust in connection with donations received from a New York-based financier, Morris Talansky between 1997 and 2005.

However, a retrial was ordered after a former aide, Shula Zaken, accepted a plea bargain and testified against Ehud Olmert. Shula Zaken gave prosecutors diary entries and tape recordings of conversations in which Ehud Olmert referred to receiving the money.

Ehud Olmert, 69, was found guilty of fraud and breach of trust in March and on May 25 was sentenced to eight months in jail. He was also given a suspended sentence of an additional eight months and fined 100,000 shekels ($25,000).

The Jerusalem District Court said the sentence recognized Ehud Olmert’s contributions to Israeli society, but noted that “a black flag hovers over his conduct”.

Ehud Olmert’s lawyer Eyal Rozovsky said they were “very disappointed” by the sentence.

The former prime minister has always insisted that he is innocent and has described the allegations against him as “a brutal, ruthless witch-hunt”.

He is also appealing against the six-year sentence he was given in May 2014 in connection with a real estate deal at took place when he was mayor of Jerusalem in the 1990s.

Ehud Olmert was convicted of accepting bribes in return for speeding up a controversial residential development, known as Holyland, in Jerusalem.

Former Israeli PM Ehud Olmert has been found guilty in the Morris Talansky case after a corruption retrial.

The Jerusalem District Court on March 30 found Ehud Olmert guilty of fraud and breach of trust.

The judges noted that new evidence provided to the court disproves Ehud Olmert’s version of events, according to which he claimed the money involved in the case was “political money” and not a personal bribe.

All three judges ruled unanimously in finding Ehud Olmert guilty. His sentence will be determined on May 7.Ehud Olmert in Morris Talansky case

Ehud Olmert had been acquitted in 2012 of taking envelopes stuffed with money from a US-based supporter.

However, a retrial was ordered after the emergence of recordings in which he referred to receiving the money.

Ehud Olmert, who served as Israeli prime minister from 2006 to 2009, is currently appealing a conviction for bribery in 2014 for which he was sentenced to six years.

His lawyers say they are considering appealing the latest conviction.