Israel's ex-president Moshe Katzav sentenced to seven years

By Jennifer Lipman, March 22, 2011
Moshe Katzav

Moshe Katzav

The former Israeli president Moshe Katzav has been sentenced to seven years in prison for rape.

In a dramatic scene, the 65-year-old cried and screamed after learning of his fate, shouting that the charges against him were a lie and that the courts had “made a mistake”.

Mr Katzav, who resigned as president in 2007 amid the allegations of sexual assault, was found guilty on two counts of rape and other charges of sexual harassment in December.

The Iranian-born politican is the highest - ranking Israeli official to be sent to prison. He must also pay fines to two of his victims, amounting to nearly £20,000.

He is likely to challenge the ruling with an appeal, and the sentence does not begin until May 8 giving him time to do so.

Last updated: 9:24am, March 22 2011