Sara Netanyahu, the wife of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, could soon face corruption charges brought to bear by the country’s attorney general centering on north of $100,000 in public funds that she allegedly spent on private meals at the prime minister’s official residence.
Attorney General Avichai Mandleblit announced that Sara Netanyahu could face charges of graft, fraud, and breach of trust for dropping an outrageous amount of taxpayer funds on frivolous expenses. That announcement was the first step in the process that could see formal charges brought against her.
In a statement, the Justice Ministry noted that Sara Netanyahu would have the opportunity to plead her case at a hearing before any charges are filed, marking the latest twist in a series of legal scandals that have followed her for years.
The attorney general’s office had previously dropped multiple investigations into alleged wrongdoing on Netanyahu’s part, including hiring a political supporter as an electrician, using government funds to buy money for a private residence, and using taxpayer funds to cover her late father’s medical care.
A Facebook post on the prime minister’s official page on Thursday waved away the allegations against Sara Netanyahu as “absurd,” while a follow-up post expressed confidence that the accusations “will evaporate in the hearing” like the other would-be charges did.
“We cannot be sure what will happen after the hearing,” said Emanuel Gross, a legal expert at Haifa University who pointed out that the attorney general’s announcement will not necessarily amount to formal charges. “We have to wait and see.”
The allegations play into a reputation that the Netanyahu family has obtained as living a flashy, excessive lifestyle at the expense of the Israeli people, rumors that the Netanyahus have chalked up to political opponents who seek to paint them in a bad light.