Aryeh Deri
Aryeh DeriYonatan Sindel/Flash90

On Thursday, Attorney-General Dr. Avichai Mandelblit announced that Shas party head Aryeh Deri had signed a plea bargain in which he admits to two tax-related crimes. Deri will pay a fine of NIS 180,000.

“I thank the Master of the World that these seven years of torturous investigations have come to a close,” said Deri. “These years have been unbearably hard for my family and myself. The investigation began with a great tumult and with grave suspicions raised of terrible wrongdoings – and ended, in the words of the Attorney-General, Dr. Avichai Mandelblit, with ‘not even a little mouse out of this case.’”

Deri added that, “With regard to the disputes over taxes, I have decided to take responsibility for mistakes that were made, without any criminal intent, in order to put this matter behind me and avoid the necessity of an entire legal process. I wish to thank my attorney, Navot Tel Tzur, for his devoted work. I will continue to focus on my work for the public interest and will lead the Shas movement with all my strength and faith.”

Deri will now resign from the Knesset and will be replaced by Rabbi Yossi Taib, a French immigrant, who formerly served as a Knesset member when Deri was Interior Minister, under the Norwegian Law.