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Former Israeli PM Olmert Leaves Prison, Requests Lifting Of Parole Restrictions
July 26 2017, 10:33 | Irvin Gilbert
Olmert left leaves prison
Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert walks out of the prison door as he is released from prison after a parole board made a decision to cut his sentence by a third, at Maasiyahu prison near Ramle, Israel July 2, 2017.
Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was released from Maasiyahu Prison Sunday morning after serving a 16-month sentence for bribery and obstruction of justice.
"He left the prison almost 30 minutes ago", Assaf Librati said.
Olmert, 71, was whisked away by Israel's security service and driven to his Tel Aviv home.
He was granted early release by a parole board on Thursday and prosecutors decided not to appeal the decision. He was also convicted in separate trials a year ago of fraud, breach of trust and obstructing justice when serving as trade minister.
In a video message released just before he began his sentence, Olmert, a debonair man reputed to have a taste for fine cigars, maintained his innocence.
"All this significantly diminishes the risk he will deviate again from honest practice".
Olmert has formally asked President Reuven Rivlin to lift his parole restrictions.
Last week Olmert was taken to hospital with complaints of pain in the chest. He was released after a week of hospitalization.
He was convicted in 2014 on charges of accepting bribes to promote a property project in Jerusalem and obstructing justice.
The investigation was ongoing, with the state attorney's office expected to announce in the coming days whether it would seek to press charges against Olmert over his conduct around the book.
The charges pertained to a period when he was mayor of Jerusalem and trade minister before becoming premier in 2006.