[VIDEO IN EXTENDED ARTICLE]
Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Monday, 6 Adar I entered Massiyahu Prison to begin serving a 19-month sentence for convictions in the Holyland and Talansky cash envelopes cases.
Shortly before entering prison he released a video to explain to the public once again that he did not break the law.
Following is a lose translation:
Today, my security detail will escort me to prison to serve my sentence. When I was prime minister I was responsible for the security of the nation and today, it is I, who will be imprisoned. This is very painful for me and my family and at this hour it is important for me to state once again that I deny taking any bribes.
It was a privilege for me to serve as mayor of Jerusalem, a cabinet minister and prime minister. It was my privilege to be a shaliach of the tzibur. I have made mistakes but in my opinion I have not broken the law. With a very heart I accept the sentenced handed down.
My tenure as prime minister ended under the veil of investigations. Today I am a former prime minister about to enter prison. I maintain the judicial snowball that has evolved in dealing with my cases continued growing to where it is today due to non-legal reasons alone, for other reasons entirely. Perhaps when the storm clears and dealing with my issues returns to normal proportions my words will be heard. I believe in Israel’s democracy and believe that my tenure as prime minister resulted in leaving an opening for a better future, one that includes peace.
In conclusion I face what lies ahead in sadness but the overwhelming support that I have received of late remains with me.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)