[JURIST] Former Israeli prime minster Ehud Olmert [JURIST news archive] was convicted Monday by the Jerusalem District Court [official website] of fraud and breach of trust in connection to payments received from American businessman Morris Talansky. According to Talansky’s previous testimony, he provided [NYT report] Olmert with more than USD $150,000 in cash over a 15-year period stretching from 1992, when Olmert ran for mayor of Jurusalem, to 2005, when he minister of industry and trade. Olmert was previously acquitted [NYT report] in 2012 of corruption charges stemming from Talansky, but a retrial was ordered after Olmert’s longtime aide Shula Zaken provided police with incriminating tapes and diary entries recording conversations between her and Olmert. Olmert’s conviction Monday marks the third time since 2012 the ex-prime minster has been found guilty on corruption charges.
Olmert has been embroiled in an ongoing corruption scandal [BBC timeline] that pre-dates his tenure as prime minister of Israel from 2006 to 2009. In September Israel’s Supreme Court [official website] postponed [JURIST report] the start of Olmert’s prison sentence pending appeal on his conviction of corruption charges. In May 2014 an Israeli trial court sentenced [JURIST report] Olmert to six years in prison for his role in a bribery scandal while serving as mayor of Jerusalem. Last March Israel’s Tel Aviv District Court convicted [JURIST report] Olmert of accepting bribes relating to the construction of a luxury apartment complex called the Holyland towers.