Despite efforts made by the police and the government to punish him for his alleged crimes, Rafi Rotem,who exposed corruption within the Israel Tax Authority, has had all charges of insulting a public servant dismissed!
Rotem was one of the 15 members of the Tax Authority’s investigations department, known as the “Group of 15,” who, back in 2002, released a document containing allegations of serious corruption within the upper ranks of the Tax Authority and the investigations unit. Despite the police’s recommendations to indict various Tax Authority officials following their investigation, the case was closed by then Tel Aviv District Prosecutor Ruth David. No indictments or further investigation would take place.
As a result of Rotem’s fight for governmental ethics and integrity, he found himself the target of severe harassment. He lost his job, his livelihood, and the life he had before. This is a blatant and unacceptable imbalance in the execution of law enforcement that only serves to discourage those who would expose further corruption, a service that is desperately needed.
Two years ago, the courts convicted Rafi Rotem of insulting public officials, harassing them through faxes, phone calls, and other such methods, and violating a judicial order. Rotem then appealed the charges and has, as of yesterday, been acquitted of all charges relating to insulting public officials.
Additionally, the judges turned to the state and asked that they would reconsider the other charges as well.
We are happy and grateful for the court’s decision and the message it sends to both Rafi Rotem and to the others who would bravely expose corruption as he did.