Sara Netanyahu signs plea deal in private chef case; to repay $15K

June 12 (UPI) — Sara Netanyahu, the wife of Israel’s prime minister, signed a plea deal Wednesday for ordering prepared meals at taxpayers’ expense, the Israeli Justice Ministry said.

Netanyahu agreed to plead guilty to exploiting another’s mistake, a lesser charge than her initial charges of aggravated fraud, fraud and breach of trust. Under the deal, she must repay $ 15,300, which includes a $ 2,800 fine.

Netanyahu, wife of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, was accused of falisfying invoices to outside chefs who were brought in to prepare food at the official residence. Prosecutors said this was done to circumvent limits on how much the prime minister and his family could pay for outside chefs and hide the fact that they employed one. There were 15 invoices falsified to outside chefs, prosecutors said.

Hiding the chefs also allowed Netanyahu to get prepared food.

Prosecutors said the Netanyahus wanted the luxury of a private chef along with the ability to cater meals. She was initially accused of spending $ 100,000 on the outside chefs, but under the plea agreement, the amount was reduced to $ 50,000.

Prosecutors first announced the proposed plea deal in May. Under the initial charges, Netanyahu faced up to eight years in prison.

Nicholas Sakelaris contributed to this report.

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