Israeli police will recommend that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu be indicted in two corruption investigations, according to reports from local media.
Police officials were set to release their findings at 8:45 p.m. local time Tuesday (1:45 p.m. EST), but the Haaretz newspaper reported that they will recommend that prosecutors pursue the charges.
In the so-called “Case 1000,” Bibi is suspected of accepting gifts from billionaire benefactors — including cigars and champagne from the Israeli-born Hollywood producer Arnon Milchan — in return for advancing their interests.
Meanwhile, “Case 2000” involves a suspected illegal deal between Netanyahu and Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper publisher Arnon Mozes that would have provided him with positive coverage in exchange for hurting rival daily Israel Hayom.
Netanyahu has denied any wrongdoing, claiming on several occasions that “there will be nothing —because there is nothing,” the Haaretz newspaper reported.
Following the police announcement, Netanyahu is scheduled to make a live statement from his residence, the Times of Israel reported.
Earlier Tuesday, senior police officials worked on completing their summary on the proposed charges.
“If and when police present a summary of the investigations to the attorney general, a short and concise statement will be released to the press informing them of the conclusions based on the evidence collected, as is the practice with investigations of public figures,” a police source told the Times of Israel.
In that summary, Israelis will find out officially whether — after year-long probes into alleged corruption — police have found enough evidence for charges to be lodged against the prime minister.
State prosecutors would then have to decide whether to file an indictment.
Netanyahu facing investigation over alleged corruption
On Tuesday, Netanyahu consulted with his lawyers and close associates on what strategy to pursue, the Times of Israel reported.
The Supreme Court a day earlier rejected a petition seeking to prevent police from publishing their recommendations.
“There is no reason to interfere,” according to a court ruling on an appeal that had been filed by right-wing attorney Yossi Fuchs.
Netanyahu has openly questioned the integrity of the police commissioner and other high-ranking officers handling the investigations.
Police Commissioner Roni Alsheich claimed in an interview last week that “powerful people” have been gathering information about the probes, Haaretz reported.
In a response on Facebook, Netanyahu called the claims “ludicrous” and said the police chief’s comments “cast a shadow” over the investigations.