Netanyahu and Mandelblit
Netanyahu and MandelblitOlivier Fitoussi & Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

Sources close to opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu and the Ministry of Justice estimate that the chances of reaching a plea bargain are slim, but both sides are not ready to completely rule out the possibility, Kan 11 News reported on Thursday.

According to the report, no negotiations were taking place as of Thursday evening and the parties have defined the beginning of next week, Sunday and Monday, as the point in time at which, if there is no significant progress, it is likely that no settlement will be reached.

The main point of contention is the issue of moral turpitude alongside the conviction. Deputy State Attorney Shlomo Lemberger said on Thursday evening at a conference of the Bar Association that "there is no doubt that for offenses of the kind that Netanyahu is supposed to confess to - there is moral turpitude attached."

"It is inconceivable that such an indictment, or whatever is left of it after all the cuts, will be left without moral turpitude. Anyone who understands moral turpitude and anyone who has ever dealt with a ruling involving moral turpitude, understands that it is inconceivable that in such acts there will be no moral turpitude. I did not say that he deserves moral turpitude, I said that if he is convicted either in the entire indictment or in a reduced indictment - it is inconceivable that there will be no moral turpitude," Lemberger added.

Meanwhile, an associate of Netanyahu, who is taking part in the negotiating team, accused the Attorney General of allegedly "getting cold feet."

On Wednesday, Netanyahu spent hours with his team of lawyers in their office in Tel Aviv. The meeting was also joined by the media advisers of the opposition chairman.