Former Israeli Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger freed from prison

After less than two years behind bars, former Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger freed from prison.

Arutz Sheva Staff,

Rabbi Metzger leaves prison Wednesday morning
Rabbi Metzger leaves prison Wednesday morning
Yehuda Haim/Flash90

Former Israeli Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger was freed from Maasiyahu prison Wednesday morning, after a parole board granted his request for a sentence reduction.

Rabbi Metzger was sentenced to three and a half years in prison as part of a plea bargain deal, under which he was convicted of bribery, fraud, and tax evasion.

The former Ashkenazi chief rabbi had originally been sentenced to four and a half years in prison, but the Israeli Supreme Court reduced Metzger’s sentence by one year.

Metzger began serving his sentence in May 2017.

This January, President Reuven Rivlin rejected a request for clemency, writing “the institution of clemency is not another part of the court system, it is intended for rare, special cases only, with unique circumstances.”

A prison parole board did accept Metzger’s request for early release, however, paving the way for his departure from Maasiyahu prison Wednesday.

“We congratulate the prosecutors for their proper position and their agreement that Rabbi Metzger should receive an early release,” Metzger’s attorneys, Rotem Tubol and Kobi Avitbol said after the decision to grant early release.

“The rabbi has completed a rehabilitation program during his time in prison, and has fulfilled all the requirements under the law for early release.”




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