Fraud and tax affair. The Tel Aviv Magistrates' Court on Tuesday evening extended the remand of Jacky Matza, director of the Israeli Tax Authority, by six days. Matza is suspected of bribery, fraud and breach of trust.
The remand of Yoram Karashi, the brother of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's bureau chief Shula Zaken, was extended by nine days.
The police also sought to extend the remand of Matza's predecessor Eitan Rov and additional suspects involved in the affair. According to suspicions, businesspeople were involved in the appointment of position holders in the Tax Authority in return for tax relief.
Karashi is suspected of taking advantage of his close relations with the senior officials and with his sister in order to interfere with appointments in the Tax Authority.
His sister, Shula Zaken, is suspected of mediating between the businesspeople, her associates and senior Tax Authority officials. On Tuesday evening she was released on bail of NIS 100,000 (about USD 23,854) to house arrest.
Shula Zaken (center) during custody hearing (Photo: Ofer Amram)
Earlier, the Police National Fraud Investigation Unit raided Zaken's house and the houses of seniors at the Israel Tax Authority and other suspects.
Zaken is suspected of having been involved in the appointment of civil service senior officials, and of taking advantage of this to grant tax benefits to her cronies.
The investigation was revealed on Channel 10 Monday evening.
On Tuesday, 22 suspects were brought in for investigation at the Fraud Unit headquarters.
The Fraud Unit has been conducting a wide-scale secret investigation against civil service officials recently, in light of suspicions they were involved in various corruption-related offenses.
The police are probing, among others, senior Tax Authority officials, private businessmen and other interested parties.
Efrat Weiss contributed to the report