- Consul to Holland arrested for bribery (04/20/2005)
- Israel arrests Netherlands consul (04/20/2005)
- Israeli consul to The Hague arrested for selling passports (04/21/2005)
- Police probe whether The Hague consul sold passports to criminals (04/22/2005)
- Foreign Ministry worker questioned over illegal passport (04/25/2005)
- Consul scandal widens (04/25/2005)
- Yitzhaki affair: Senior official probed (04/25/2005)
- Foreign Min. official questioned over sale of passports (04/26/2005)
- FM official probed in consul affair (04/26/2005)
- Uriel Yitzhaki released to house arrest (04/28/2005)
- Police: Ministry turned blind eye for envoy to The Hauge (05/09/2005)
- Director-general flies home urgently to douse Foreign Ministry fires (05/20/2005)
- Former consul in Holland faces charges of theft, fraud and assault (01/17/2006)
- Diplomat Uriel Yitzhaki charged (04/26/2006)
Israeli consul to The Hague arrested for selling passports
By Ron Singer
Haaretz - April 21, 2005
By Jonathan Lis and Roni Singer
Haaretz - April 25, 2005
Police on Monday questioned a Foreign Ministry employee for allegedly issuing a passport illegally. Roni Yedidyah, who previously worked in the European department of the ministry's consular unit, is suspected of breach of trust.
Police suspect Yedidyah of issuing the passport at the request of Israel's consul to The Hague, Uriel Yitzhaki, who has been arrested on suspicion of accepting bribes in exchange for issuing Israeli passports unlawfully.
The Petah Tikva Magistrate's Court decided Monday to extend Yitzhaki's remand by three days.
During the remand hearing, police revealed that they also suspected Yitzhaki of additional instances of bribery and sexual harassment.
The police's international investigations unit suspects that Yitzhaki issued Israeli passports in exchange for bribes and other benefits over a long period of time. He is also suspected of fraud, breach of trust, statutory rape, abuse of his position and money laundering.
Yitzhaki denies the allegations against him.
Police are also investigating whether some of the people for whom Yitzhaki allegedly issued the passports are related to criminals. Police do not have accurate information to support their suspicions, but investigators say Yitzhak had a reputation across Europe for issuing passports in exchange for payment.
Yitzhaki was arrested at the airport last week as he arrived in Israel to celebrate the Passover holiday with his family. Yitzhaki refused Monday to answer reporters' questions.
Israeli police officers, who have dubbed the case The Flying Dutchman, have been investigating Yitzhaki for more than six months, in close collaboration with the Dutch police.
Consul scandal widens
By Efrat Weiss
YNET News - April 25, 2005
Police said the suspicions against Yedidia were fraud related and she was questioned by police in Petah Tikva.
Earlier Monday, the Petah Tikva Magistrate's Court extended Yitzhaki's remand by an additional three days.
Yitzhaki is charged with receiving bribes in return for allegedly selling over 150 passports, in addition to fraud and breach of trust.
By extending his remand, Army Radio reported, the court accepted the police's position that argued against Yitzhaki's release to house arrest, out of the concern he would coerce witnesses.
During the hearing, the police representative said that another suspicion is currently being examined by which Yitzhaki may be involved in another bribing affair involving a moving company. She added that several female employees at the consulate have complained that Yitzhaki had sexually harassed them.
Yitzhaki's attorney, Yaakov Weinrot, estimated that the source of these accusations was a "painful romantic episode that resulted in wicked plot that has no basis."
So far, Yitzhaki has not cooperated with the police and has refused to answer the interrogators' questions, Israel Radio reported.
During the hearing, the name of the person who exposed the affair was revealed: Victoria Stephanski, a consulate employee.
In an undercover operation codenamed "The Flying Dutchman" the police's International Serious Crimes Unit arrested Yitzhaki after he arrived in Israel late Tuesday night for allegedly misusing his consular position to illegally sell over 150 passports.
Yitzhaki is suspected of receiving tens of thousands of dollars in addition to other perks in exchange for issuing passports to criminal elements and people who were not entitled to them.
Police also suspect that Yitzhaki, a veteran and high-ranking foreign ministry official, had an illegal sexual relationship with a female subordinate of his at the Hague embassy.
In addition to the fraud, Yitzhaki is accused of threatening the lives of several individuals involved in the passport affair and of laundering millions of shekels.
The investigation, launched in July, was under a tight gag order, which was lifted Wednesday morning.
Police launched the investigation after receiving intelligence information that Yitzhaki, 56, had used his position as head of consular affairs in the Dutch embassy to issue passports to people ineligible to receive them.
FM official probed in consul affair
By Yaakov Katz
Jerusalem Post - April 26, 2005
Uriel Yitzhaki released to house arrest
Police: We have solid evidence from the Netherlands against Yitzhaki
By Noam Sharvit
Globes - April 28, 2005
Diplomat Uriel Yitzhaki charged
By Dan Izenberg
Jerusalem Post - April 26, 2006
The Jerusalem District Attorney's Office Tuesday indicted Uriel Yitzhaki, the former Israeli consul-general in The Hague, for financial irregularities and performing an indecent act. According to the charge sheet, Yitzhaki offered to issue an Israeli passport to an Austrian in return for 5,000 euros and other benefits. He also allegedly arranged with a shipping company to inflate the charges for transporting containers belonging to Israeli embassy staff to and from the Netherlands and pocket the difference. Yitzhaki allegedly netted 20,000 euros in this manner.