Fomer Israeli PM Olmert sentenced to eight months for graft | News | DW | 25.05.2015
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Fomer Israeli PM Olmert sentenced to eight months for graft

An Israeli court has handed down an eight-month prison sentence to former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, media reports say. He is also facing a six-year prison sentence in a separate bribery case.

Olmert, who was Israeli prime minister from 2006 to 2009, was also given an additional, suspended sentence of eight months and was fined $25,000 (22,700 euros).

He received his prison sentence almost two months after being convicted of fraud and breach of trust for having accepted bribes from a US supporter while in previous posts as mayor of Jerusalem and later, a Cabinet minister.

Lawyer Eyal Rozovsky called Monday's ruling by the Jerusalem District Court very disappointing and said Olmert's legal team would appeal the sentence.

Olmert's conviction came three years after he had been acquitted on the most serious charges in a previous trial of the same case. He was retried this year after further evidence emerged in connection with another bribery case for which he received a six-year jail sentence in May last year.

Olmert has not yet been imprisoned, as he is appealing the latter verdict. He has described all allegations against him as "a brutal, ruthless witch-hunt."

End of a career

The 69-year-old first became caretaker prime minister in 2006 after premier Ariel Sharon suffered a stroke. He resigned from the post after police brought allegations of corruption against him.

Olmert is the first-ever Israeli premier to be given a prison sentence for corruption, and the legal action against him has put a dramatic end to his political career.

His time as premier was largely marked by his aspiration to achieve an historic peace deal with the Palestinians.

tj/ng (AP, AFP)

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