18 September 2014
Stas Misezhnikov, former minister for tourism was detained on suspicion of pushing lucrative contracts to his associates. He held office from 2009 to 2013. He was the subject of an undercover investigation over the past one year. Police said that they have made several other arrests for questioning and searched homes and offices of those who were questioned. They also confiscated computers and documents.
State Comptroller Joseph Shapira, last Tuesday, severely criticised the former minister for funding a conference for students in 2010. In his report, he said that the former minister’s prior relationship with the conference organizers put the ministry’s involvement with the conference questionable. The ministry had improperly used NIS 936,000 – one third of ministry’s expenses that year – for just this conference.
Misezhnikov was born in Moscow, Russia and migrated to Israel in 1982. In 1992 he obtained a BA in social and political sciences from Tel Aviv University. Eight years later he was awarded a Master’s Degree by the same University. In 2003 he became a member of Rishon LeZion city council and served in it till 2006. In 2006 he became a Knesset member. He retained his seat in 2009 elections and became minister for tourism.