Lawyers for Shas leader Arye Deri have already prepared a 12-page legal opinion setting out why he should be accepted as a minister in the next government despite his criminal convictions, they said. Channel 12.
Deri was convicted of tax crimes in January after he pleaded guilty as part of a deal with prosecutors that also saw him resign from the Knesset.
Deri’s resignation from parliament allowed him to avoid a charge of moral turpitude — which applies to public officials — that could keep him out of office for several years.
The legal opinion also argues that since he was only given a suspended sentence, there is no bar to him returning to office.
The legal opinion has been shared with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who wants to appoint Deri as prime minister, according to the report, adding that it may face legal challenges.
This is Deri’s second accusation while he is working in politics.
Deri was previously jailed for 22 months from 2000 to 2002, after being convicted of taking bribes while serving as interior minister. That decision is morally wrong. In 2013, he returned to politics and restored Shas leadership, eventually returning to the ministry in 2016. until last year, when his party joined the opposition. The court ruled that his prior conviction did not disqualify him from the position.