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Sara Netanyahu Admits to Misuse of Public Funds

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's wife, Sara, arrives in court for a hearing on a plea deal over the misuse of public funds, in Jerusalem, June 16, 2019.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's wife Sara has admitted to the misuse of state funds and was ordered by a court to pay $15,000.

Netanyahu avoided a prison sentence after accepting a plea agreement. She had been accused of using some $100,000 in state funds on catering services at the prime minister's residence, bypassing regulations that prohibit the practice if a cook is employed at the prime minister's home.

Defense lawyers had argued the case had nothing to do with her and that it was simply an attempt to bring down her husband.

Under a plea deal, Netanyahu will pay the state $12,490 and pay a fine of $2,777.

This is not the first time Sara Netanyahu's conduct has come before a court. In 2016, a court awarded $47,000 in damages to a former housekeeper who accused her of verbal abuse and mistreatment.

Separately, the prime minister is also facing legal challenges. In February, the Israeli attorney general said he plans to indict Benjamin Netanyahu on charges of bribery, fraud and breach of trust in connection with three cases, pending a final hearing.