Businessman Lev Leviev reached a plea agreement with the prosecutor's office and will not be detained

Posted on Sep 22, 2022 by Ifi Reporter

Those around the businessman Lev Leviev hope that the plea agreement reached in the diamond smuggling case in which he was suspected, will lead to the closure of the case against him in the coming days. Leviev, who is not a party to the negotiated settlement, landed in Israel on Tuesday and presented himself today for questioning at the offices of Lahav Unit 433.
According to sources familiar with the contacts between Leviev and the authorities prior to his arrival in Israel, before his arrival in Israel "an informal agreement was reached between the prosecutor's office and Leviev's lawyers that in exchange for his arrival, he will not be detained for the purpose of his investigation." A spokesman on behalf of Leviev said that after giving a version to the police, he will leave this evening back to Russia, his country of residence for the past few years.
According to another source, summaries have been reached on a plea agreement that is expected to be submitted to the court in the coming days - to which Shalbev is not a party. As part of the settlement, Leviev's diamond company, LLD Diamonds, will be convicted and fined. In addition, the former CEO Reuven Shmalov will also be convicted. It is currently unknown what punishment he is expected to face. According to a source in the enforcement authorities, "the direct evidence against Leviev is not strong and it is estimated that the case against him will be closed, without the need for a settlement."
Babe was suspected of being involved in the systematic smuggling of diamonds into Israel amounting to hundreds of millions of shekels, until near the beginning of the investigation against him and the LLD diamond company he controls. According to the suspicion, the LLD company operated for about 16 years a network of smugglers who smuggled diamonds into Israel through the National Bank of Israel, with the goods inside their bodies. The suspicions are based, among other things, on the testimony of a state witness, according to which he participated in the smuggling activity for years.
When the investigation began in 2018, many suspects were arrested, including Zebulon, Levev's son, who previously served as CEO of LLD, and other employees of the company. Days after the investigation began, a tragic event occurred in which the accounting employee of the company investigated in the case, Mazel Hadadi, fell to her death. From a narrow window on the tenth floor of the "Noam" building at the Diamond Exchange in Ramat Gan, where the company's offices are located. The police investigated the circumstances of the employee's death and determined that it was likely a suicide.
Since the beginning of the investigation, Leviev has managed to evade the law thanks to his residence in Russia, which is not obliged to extradite suspects to Israel. Leviev is considered a protégé of the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, and has so far been protected by the country's authorities. Over the years he flew several times in his private plane to Dubai and other destinations, without being arrested.
Since the beginning of the investigation, Leviev's lawyers, Eitan Maoz, Sharon Kahana and Giora Adrat, have been conducting negotiations with the prosecutor's office. From the first day, the lawyers agreed that Leviev would come to Israel for the purpose of his interrogation, but they conditioned this on the provision of guarantees that he would not be arrested for that purpose. Officials in the enforcement authorities denied this morning the claim that they complied with the demand not to arrest Leviev, but at the same time confirmed that the case against him is expected to be closed anyway.
The Taxation and Economic Prosecutor's Office stated: "Following inquiries from reporters, we will clarify that Leviev informed the enforcement authorities of the date of his return to Israel, and that prior to his arrival it was made clear to him that the question of his arrest or the conditions of his release would be considered by the police in accordance with developments in the investigation."
On behalf of Lev Leviev, it was stated: "Mr. Leviev came to headquarters this morning to HB 433 and gave to the investigation his consistent version according to which he was not involved in diamond smuggling at any stage. Mr. Leviev will return to his family tonight, and will return to Israel in the coming weeks."


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