Police Complaint Filed Against Former Chief of Staff
Attorney Yoram Sheftel has reportedly filed a complaint with the Gush Dan police against former Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi for obstructing investigations into the "Harpaz Affair", as revealed in an interview with the Lieutenant Colonel Friday with Channel 1.
The "Harpaz Affair" is the name given to allegations that Lieutenant-Colonel Boaz Harpaz forged a document that was intended to prevent General Yoav Galant from being named Ashkenazi’s successor as the IDF's General Chief of Staff. Military police have been investigating Ashkenazi and other top officials on suspicion of improper conduct, which is a crime under military law. Ashkenazi has denied involvement.
Sheftel's complaint is the most recent development in the highly publicized case, which has returned to the public eye after an interview between Harpaz and Channel 1 premiered this past Friday night. In the interview, Harpaz reportedly claimed that on the day that the news broke that military investigations into Harpaz and Ashkenazi had begun, Ashkenazi called Harpaz and asked to "reduce the connection between them." Harpaz maintains that this statement referenced Ashkenazi's wife, Ronit - not the former Chief of Staff himself.
Sheftel's complaint indicates that the suspicious statement may have been a violation of law 245A of the Penal Code, which states that "the prevention of a person, or the attempted prevention of a person, to hide information or to provide false information while he is under military investigation, or who tries to retract a statement regarding the investigation, is subject to five years' imprisonment."
Sheftel also has filed the complaint in response to repeated failures by Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein to investigate the matter. He warns that failure to open the investigation within 72 hours mandates that the issue be brought before the Supreme Court.