HaRav Shlomo Shlush, who serves as the Chief Sephardi Rabbi of Haifa as well as the Chief Rabbinate’s Av Beis Din of Northern Israel was questioned by police ‘under warning’ on suspicion of illegal activities pertaining to his position. When police question a suspect ‘under warning’ it indicates the evidence gathered in the case points to the likelihood of a criminal indictment.
Police are acting on the state comptroller’s report that was submitted to police that addresses illegal activities relating to officials in the rabbinate giving jobs to relatives. In addition, the report cites cases in which the local rabbinate granted a hashgacha and received illegal gifts and gratuities in return, also citing cases in which mashgichim were “pressured” to provide information aimed at taking down those who are opposed to Rav Slush in the realm of the complex politics that are part of the rabbanut system.
An investigation was opened in 2007 into alleged fraudulent activities pertaining to conversion involving alleged acceptance of bribes and gratuities to “moving along” the conversion process for adults and children alike.
In June 2011 another investigation was launched following a complaint by the owner of a catering hall, who alleged he was compelled to make payoffs to get a hashgacha from the local rabbinate.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)