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Former Israeli PM on trial again for corruption

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Jerusalem : Israel’s former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert appeared before a Jerusalem court Tuesday after the state prosecution reopened a corruption case against him.

Olmert was acquitted in what came to be known as the “Talansky Affair” in July 2012, after being charged with fraud and tax evasion for illegally receiving large sums of money in envelopes during fund-raisers from US businessman Moris Talansky, Xinhua reported.

The state prosecution decided to reopen the trial after reaching a plea bargain with Olmert’s former aide Shula Zaken, who was willing to testify against him in the Talansky affair.

Zaken offered new evidence in the form of audio recordings of conversation between her and Olmert. She is set to start testifying in November.

The Supreme Court granted the state attorney’s motion for a retrial following the newly discovered evidence and testimony.

In exchange for her help, Zaken was sentenced to 11 months in jail for her part in the impropriety.

The former prime minister was forced to step down in 2008 following several corruption allegations.

He was convicted in another case, the Holyland affair, in May this year, in which he was found guilty of receiving bribes as the former mayor of Jerusalem in exchange for expediting construction procedures for a real estate project.

Olmert was sentenced by the Tel Aviv magistrate court for six years jail-term in the ruling.

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