Ynet exclusive: "I did not flee the country," Shula Zaken, former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's bureau chief told Ynet Thursday.
Currently staying in the United States, Zaken, who has been Olmert's confidante for almost his entire career, is linked to the latest scandal the former premier is involved in – the Holyland real estate corruption case.
"I will never leave Israel. I was born here and I'll die here. I'm on a planned vacation abroad and the court has granted me permission not to attend a hearing, so I extended my vacation. This has nothing to do with the Holyland case," she said.
According to police suspicions, Zaken has extensive knowledge and involvement in the scandal, in which millions are believed to have changed hands. The police believe Zaken may have handled some of the funds personally.
As for the reports that she had agreed to become a state witness, Zaken denied the reports, telling Ynet the matter was never discussed.
Zaken further dismissed the rumors that she was planning to leave Israel, saying she plans on retuning to the country next week.
The police intend on questioning Zaken upon her return. Senior sources familiar with the Holyland case told Ynet that there is a good chance a warrant will be issued for her arrest.