Yair Netanyahu, the son of Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu, is demanding that the state pay compensation in the amount of hundreds of thousands of shekels that he was ordered by a court to pay after he lost a defamation suit, HaAyin HaShevi'it reported on Sunday.
In the lawsuit, which reached the Supreme Court, Yair was required to compensate the former editor of Walla, Avi Alkalay, for sharing on social media a false conspiracy theory that attributed to Alkalay membership in a secret fraternity working to overthrow the Prime Minister of Israel by railroading him.
The court ordered Yair Netanyahu to pay Alkalay 250,000 shekels for the defamation, and the amount swelled to about 420,000 shekels after legal expenses, interest and payment for execution were added.
Recently, Netanyahu's son contacted the Tel Aviv district attorney's office and requested that the state pay the compensation in his place. The basis for the unusual request is a claim that Netanyahu's loss in the defamation lawsuit is due to the negligence of a civil servant. A source familiar with the request said that the district attorney’s office has not yet made a final decision on the matter.
Yair claimed along the way that he could not file a statement of defense because he did not know that he was being sued. The indictment, he claimed, was never handed over to him.
In a column he recently published on the Ice website, the son of the Prime Minister-designate explained, "The lawsuit was submitted to the Prime Minister's Office, and one of the officials in the office (a person whom I don't know and whose name I've never even heard) signed the lawsuit by himself and without authority. After that, the letter was apparently thrown into one of the office's piles of mail (the office receives hundreds of letters a week), and so 60 days passed without me receiving the letter or even knowing about its existence."