French fraudster linked to Netanyahu jailed over vast tax scheme
A French court has sentenced to eight years in jail a tycoon, who previously made unrelated donations to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, over a massive fraud scheme.
Arnaud Mimran was convicted of fraud on Thursday and sentenced to eight years in prison and one million-euro fine for the 2008-2009 fraud, which French authorities say resulted in a major tax shortfall.
Mimran has been on trial as a key suspect in a 283 million-euro scam in the trade and taxation of carbon emissions permits.
Half of the defendants were tried in absentia and one person was acquitted.
The tax scam case has been described as “the heist of a century” by French authorities.
During his trial, the French magnate also testified that on another occasion he had gave 1 million euros to Netanyahu’s election campaign.
Netanyahu’s office has denied any campaign payments and said the contribution was made in 2001 to a fund used while he held no office.
Mimran was convicted of tax offenses in France in the late 1990s as well.
Meanwhile, Israel’s police are reportedly probing whether the prime minister had received illegal contributions from foreign businessmen during his current tenure.
Netanyahu and his wife, Sara, have become embroiled in a series of controversies about how their wealthy lifestyle is funded.