Israeli Police detained for questioning Attorney David Shimron, a close associate of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the ongoing investigation of corruption charges regarding contracts to acquire German-made submarines and ships, termed Case 3000, Jerusalem Post reported Wednesday.
Shimron, who is Netanyahu’s personal lawyer and distant relative, was released to house arrest on Monday and questioned a second time on Tuesday, according to Jerusalem Post.
Questions over the submarine deal surfaced in November, with a Channel 10 report that Shimron worked as an intermediary for Miki Ganor, the Israel representative of the German shipbuilder ThyssenKrupp. Shimron is reportedly suspected of pushing to buy submarines worth some $1.5 billion from the German firm over the objections of the defense establishment, including then war minister Moshe Ya’alon.
Shimron was detained on Monday along with six other suspects including: the former deputy head of the National Security Council retired Brig. Gen. Avriel Bar-Yosef; Ganor; and attorney Ronen Shemer who works with Ganor. Police said Shimron along with the six other suspects were detained on suspicion of bribery, fraud, money laundering and tax offenses.
Shimron has previously denied any wrongdoing in the case. Netanyahu has also denied any involvement in the deal with ThyssenKrupp.
Police also detained former OC Navy V.-Adm. (res.) Eliezer Merom on Tuesday. Marom, who has been chairman of the Israel Airports Authority since 2015, was questioned as a suspect at the offices of the Lahav 433 National Crime Unit in Lod beginning early Tuesday morning and released to house arrest that night.
Maron is suspected of receiving bribe money from Miki Ganor, the Israel representative of the German shipbuilder ThyssenKrupp, Channel 2 reported. Marom commanded the navy from 2007 to 2011.
In February, Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit authorized a full-blown criminal investigation into the submarine affair, saying that police had gathered enough evidence to raise suspicions “that some of those involved in the affair committed crimes of public corruption.”
In June, Der Spiegel reported that the German National Security Council approved the purchase of the three submarines by Israel, subsidized by Berlin. However, the contract reportedly includes a clause giving Berlin the right to cancel the deal if any improprieties or criminal offenses are proven as a result of the current police investigation.