Lev Leviev's son among diamond smuggling suspects

Lev Leviev  photo: Tamar Matsafi

Lev Leviev himself is wanted for questioning on suspicion of involvement in diamond smuggling, but does not intend to come to Israel for questioning.

Lev Leviev's son Zvulun Leviev, Reuven Shmuelov, Asher Yechieli, Hananya Issacharov, Yehuda Asor, and another relative of Leviev are the six suspects in the diamond smuggling affair at the LLD company, controlled by businessperson Lev Leviev. The six men are suspected of being in a ring that smuggled diamonds worth NIS 300 million into Israel and other countries over many years.

Lev Leviev himself is wanted for questioning on suspicion of involvement in diamond smuggling, but he currently lives in Russia and apparently does not intend to come to Israel for questioning. The investigators believe that Lev Leviev fled to Russia from London, where he has resided in recent years, after learning of the investigation against him. Lev Leviev denies the accusations and suspicions against him.

Zvulun Leviev worked at LLD for 13 years, including four years as the company's CEO.

"More than once, I have come to a case and seen that there was no connection, even a coincidental one, to my client," Adv. Amir Hadad said in the hearing, adding that the other relative of Lev Leviev had had not connection with LLD since August 2009, while the suspicions in the case involved the 2010-2018 period. Hadad also expressed astonishment that the investigators were unaware of the dispute and rift between Lev Leviev and his other relative (after the police representative in the hearing said that this was the first time he had heard about it). "Everyone knows about the dispute, inside and out. The thought that he is sitting here on the same bench as Lev Leviev's son is entertaining, because there is not even a coincidental connection. The rift is a deep one. It is so deep that in 2013, Lev Leviev filed a lawsuit against the other suspected family member, and there, too, he says that he got rid of him because he did terrible things. If I come to the court and an investigative unit like the National Serious and International Crimes Unit doesn't know such basic details, there is a problem here," Hadad said in the hearing.

Yechieli, a professional diamond polisher, was employed by LLD until 2012. As part of his job, he spent time at the company's plant in Russia, where he was VP operations. Issacharov worked at the company plant in Russia starting in 2000, and was a work manager in 2014-2016.

Asor is not an LLD employee, but resided in Russia in 2004-2011 and worked in home maintenance. The state alleges that Asor linked himself to a diamond smuggling offense.

Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on November 6, 2018

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2018

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Lev Leviev  photo: Tamar Matsafi
Lev Leviev photo: Tamar Matsafi
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