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World Briefing / Israel

Ex-president will be charged with rape

March 09, 2009|TIMES WIRE REPORTS

Former Israeli President Moshe Katsav will be charged with raping a woman who once worked for him and with other sex crimes against former female employees, the Justice Ministry said.

The charges stem from a series of complaints filed by four women who worked for Katsav when he was tourism minister in the 1990s and president earlier this decade. Besides rape, the accusations include sexual assault and sexual harassment.

Katsav contends that he is innocent and a victim of a political witch hunt. Nearly a year ago, he called off a plea bargain that would have allowed him to escape jail time, saying he wanted to stand trial to clear his name.

Atty. Gen. Menachem Mazuz has not decided when to file the indictment, which will also include charges of indecent acts and obstruction of justice, the ministry said.

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