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September 17, 2014 / 22 Elul, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Bank of China’

Israel Loses Case to Gag Witness in Bank of China Terror Trial

Tuesday, December 17th, 2013

An American family, whose son was killed in a suicide attack in Israel, has won its argument in a U.S. court against the Netanyahu administration that has been trying to muzzle testimony by a former intelligence officer.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu formerly told the family of 16-year-old Daniel Wurtz that it supported letting Uri Shaya testify against the Bank of China, which is charged with having handled terrorists’ monetary transactions.

Wurtz and 10 others were killed in the attack in Tel Aviv in 2006.

The Mossad has helped the Wurtz family prepare its case, but the Israeli government last month made an about-face and told the court that testimony by Shaya might reveal state secrets.

Wurtz’ family in the lawsuit accused of surrendering to pressure from China, which happens to be Israel’s fourth largest lender.

“The complaint was filed only after the GOI (Government of Israel) repeatedly assured my attorneys that it would provide cooperation and support for our allegations,” Daniel’s father, Yekutiel Wultz, said in a written declaration, Reuters reported.

Israel Dropping Bank of China Terror Financing Case, Roiling US

Wednesday, July 17th, 2013

Israel reportedly has backed away from involvement in a terrorism financing lawsuit against the Bank of China brought by the parents of a suicide bombing victim after pushing the family to file the suit.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to keep an Israeli intelligence official from testifying in the case reportedly is roiling relations between his government and the Obama administration. It also has angered one of Israel’s staunchest congressional defenders, Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.).

Yedioth Achronot reported Monday that U.S.-Israel tensions over the matter brought Israeli U.S. Ambassador Michael Oren to Jerusalem over the weekend, where he briefed Netanyahu and Oren’s slated successor, Ron Dermer.

According to a June 21 account in The Wall Street Journal, which reported that Netanyahu was considering pulling back from the case, it was the Israeli government that in 2007 urged Yekutiel and Sheryl Wultz to file suit because of tough U.S. anti-terrorist financing laws.

The Wultzes’ 16-year-old son, Daniel, had been killed the previous year in an Islamic Jihad terrorist attack in Tel Aviv.

Israeli government officials told the Wultzes in 2007 that Israel would provide intelligence in the lawsuit showing that Israel warned China in 2005 that the Bank of China was laundering money for Palestinian terrorist groups and asked it to stop. China paid no heed.

China pressed Netanyahu to keep the intelligence official from testifying in exchange for Netanyahu’s high-profile May visit to China promoting trade between the two nations.

Ros-Lehtinen wrote Netanyahu in June urging him not to succumb to the Chinese pressure, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Notably, The Wultzes are cousins of Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.), the Republican majority leader in the U.S. House of Representatives. Cantor in speeches has cited Daniel’s killing and its effect on his extended family.

Oren, Yedioth Achronot reported, told Netanyahu over the weekend that the Obama administration is ready to subpoena the intelligence official if Netanyahu does not make him available, as well as top Israeli officials, including Dermer and Oren.

The embassy declined comment on the case. Ros-Lehtinen’s office did not return requests for comment.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/israel-dropping-bank-of-china-terror-financing-case-roiling-us/2013/07/17/

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