Sharon?s Son, Omri, Admits to Corruption in ?99 Likud Election

MK Omri Sharon (Likud), son of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, admitted in a plea bargain agreement, that he filed false documents relating to his father’s 1999 campaign to head the Likud party.

Scott Shiloh , | updated: 17:49

Sharon’s conviction can carry a sentence of up to five years in prison. Following the conviction, Sharon is expected to resign from politics and from his seat in the Knesset.

Sharon admitted his guilt in the face of evidence that, if presented in court, would have embarrassed his father who has also been investigated for corruption in a number of scandals. Commentators maintain that Omri preferred to plead guilty and potentially end his political career, rather than expose his father to public criticism at a trial.

According to the indictment, from July 1999 to February 2000, Omri received campaign contributions totaling NIS 6 million from corporations based in Israel and abroad. Those sums greatly exceeded the maximum permitted under Israel’s campaign financing law.

Moreover, Omri did not report these contributions to the Likud. In order to use the funds, the money was funneled into a straw company, Annex Research, that paid for supplies and other services related to his father’s campaign.

In addition to violating the campaign finance law, Omri was convicted of lying under oath.

Aside from determining the extent of Omri’s punishment, which may include a prison term and various fines, the court must also decide whether Omri’s crimes amounted to moral turpitude. Persons convicted of crimes involving moral turpitude are barred from running for elected office.