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Israeli police have confronted Benjamin Netanyahu with potentially damaging testimony from Hollywood producer Arnon Milchan in an ongoing corruption probe into the Israeli prime minister.
Israeli media outlets are reporting that police questioned Netanyahu again on Monday, asking him to respond to testimony obtained from Milchan by Israeli police who spoke to the Revenant producer at his home in Los Angeles over the weekend.
It’s alleged that Netanyahu received illegal gifts from Milchan, including cigars, expensive liquor and jewelry for Netanyahu’s wife, worth more than $100,000.
The police have confirmed they questioned Netanyahu but did not disclose the substance of what was discussed.
Israeli media, however, have reported that Netanyahu has admitted to receiving the gifts from Milchan but claims they were presents from a friend and not illegal.
“The prime minister answered all the questions asked and left the investigation completely relaxed. We have stated repeatedly that there will be nothing because there was nothing,” Netanyahu’s lawyer, Yaakov Weinroth, said in a statement.
Israeli media reports that the police questioning was interrupted for about a half hour when President Donald Trump telephoned Netanyahu.
Israel Channel 10 reported that Netanyahu tried to undermine the allegations that he received expensive cigars from Milchan by insisting that he had, for years, suffered sinus problems and rarely smoked.
Australian billionaire James Packer is also linked to the investigation, dubbed “File 1000,” and is also suspected of giving lavish gifts to Netanyahu in a bid to influence him.
Israel police commissioner inspector general Roni Alsheich confirmed to the press that the investigation is in its final stages and the police will soon submit their findings, along with a recommendation to either indict or close the case — to Israeli attorney general Avichai Mandelblit for a final decision.
Channel 2 reported that police are leaning toward recommending indicting Netanyahu in the case.
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