State Prosecutor Moshe Lador received a verbal lashing by the Tel Aviv Magistrate's Court on Wednesday, as Judge Riva Niv deemed his conduct in the Olmert case as one that "has compromised the public's faith in the justice system."
Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is currently facing trial for multiple fraud and breach of trust allegation. Lador spoke of the legal proceedings in an interview with Haaretz Daily – for which Olmert is suing him.
"This court has already expressed its negative opinion on the face that the judicial proceedings were discussed in the media. Statements made by the state prosecutor in an interview are perceived by the public as having had been ascertained judicially… prior to that happening in court.
"It is enough to undermine the public's faith in law enforcement and the justice system," she said.
The court had previously rejected Lador's motion to quash Olmert's suit. The State Prosecutor's Office then announced it wished to lend Lador immunity – as public officials are afforded – but Olmert's attorneys claimed that "giving interviews is not one of the state prosecutor's job requirements."
The court accepted Olmert's position in the matter, ruling that the circumstances under which the interview was conducted did not warrant granting the State's request.
A Justice Ministry source told Ynet that the interview, given on the occasion of Lador's third anniversary in office, did not represent the norm, adding that he only granted the interview – "which was one of dozens of other requests for interviews" – because of the apparent public interest in the work done by the State Prosecutor's Office.
Lador gave the interview over 18 months after the legal proceedings against Olmert had begun and had nothing to do with them, he added.
Still, some in the Prosecution said that Lador should never have brought up the case in the interview. Nevertheless, they too believe that he deserves the customary immunity given to those in the Public Service.
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