There is not sufficient evidence to launch an investigation against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, police said on Sunday, concerning money that was transferred from businessman Dedi Graucher to Netanyahu's driver.
"The attorney-general ordered police to investigate suspicions that haredi singer and businessman Dedi Graucher handed thousands of shekels to Netanyahu's driver to be passed on to the prime minister," Channel 10 news reported Sunday evening.
Netanyahu's lawyers, David Shimron and Michael Rabilu, informed Channel 10 news that such accusations against the prime minister were "false tales that — not by chance — were published two weeks before the election to tarnish Mr. Netanyahu and to hurt his chances for re-election."
"The prime minister did not receive a single penny from Mr. Dedi Graucher, neither directly nor indirectly," Graucher told Channel 10.
"Mr. Graucher gave hundreds of shekels in financial assistance to Netanyahu's long-time driver to help his sister," said Graucher. "That was without any connection to the prime minister and without his knowledge."
"The [former] state comptroller received information that a man named Dedi Graucher had transferred a sum of money to the prime minister's driver," the Justice Ministry said in a statement on Sunday.
"According to one of the claims, the money was intended for the prime minister. The state comptroller passed this information along to the attorney-general, and the attorney-general then tasked the police in May 2012, with investigating the information. The police believed there was no evidential basis that justified opening a criminal probe of this case," the Justice Ministry said.
Eli Iluz, the driver implicated in the case, offered the following explanation: "I twice received $300 ahead of the holidays for the sake of my widowed sister, who is taking care of five children," he said. "Mr. Netanyahu has no connection to Mr. Graucher's holiday gifts to my sister."