Israeli police revealed early this morning that an extensive, year-long corruption investigation had led to the arrest of 30 suspects, including a deputy minister, a former minister, a ministry director, and a host of senior public officials.
Detectives from the Lahav 433 serious crimes and anti-corruption unit swooped down on the homes and offices of a laundry list of public officials early Wednesday amid suspicions of bribery, fraud, breach of trust, falsifying corporate documents and money laundering.
The names of the suspects, including the female deputy minister, mayors, directors of various NGOs, union heads, senior figures in public corporations, and political activists, were to be released for publication Wednesday afternoon.
The allegations were said to implicate members of Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beytenu party.
“There was a suspicion that they conspired and acted in a systematic way to advance their personal interests and received money for personal use by way of various crimes in a manner that significantly impeded appropriate management in their areas of governance,” police said in a statement.
Investigators suspect that large sums of money were inappropriately transferred to non-government organizations and various other organizations.
In return, the organizations made nepotistic appointments as well as circulating some of the money back to public service officials in the form of cash payoffs and benefits.
The suspects were to be arraigned at the Rishon Lezion Magistrate’s Court at 2 p.m. Wednesday.
Read more: The Times of Israel