Sudanese migrant in Israel
Sudanese migrant in IsraelIsrael news photo: Flash 90

The Ministerial Committee for Legislation approved on Sunday a bill that would impose a jail sentence or fine on illegal aliens who send money abroad.

The bill will come up for its initial reading in the Knesset Monday and is expected to pass, as are all bills that receive the Ministerial Committee's go-ahead.

The bill is just one out of a series of financial steps that the government intends to take in order to stem the tide of illegal aliens entering Israel.

According to the new law, transfer of funds abroad by an illegal alien will be punishable by six months in jail or a fine of NIS 29,200. A person convicted of assisting an infiltrator to transfer funds will face up to 12 months in jail – twice the sentence facing the infiltrator himself.

The stricter punishment for those assisting in the transfer is meant for dealing with the people creating the infrastructure for the money transfers. The authorities will have the right to seize the funds being transferred and will only release them when the infiltrator leaves Israel.

The limitations will not be imposed on cases defined as humanitarian or on people recognized as refugees.

A team headed by the Government Secretary, Tzvi Hauser, found that illegal aliens transfer more than NIS 500M annually to their countries of origin, both legally and through illegal couriers. About 10,000 illegal aliens have bank accounts in Israel.