Police in Israel have been ordered to police their desire to gamble in casinos, whether at home or abroad.
Casino gambling is currently illegal in Israel and local police tasked with eradicating illegal gambling operations know better than to be caught patronizing such establishments. But Israeli cops have now been told that all casinos – even those located in foreign jurisdictions where gambling is legal – are explicitly off limits.
Haaretz reported that Israel Police Chief Roni Alsheich issued an order to his top brass, instructing them to inform all officers that visiting a casino is now extremely detrimental to one’s career, regardless of where that casino is located.
Understandably, Alsheich’s new order is causing some resentment in the ranks from officers who feel they’re being treated unfairly. But Alsheich reportedly believes that Israeli police need to hold themselves to a higher standard than ordinary citizens, who remain free to get their gamble on while on holiday abroad.
Israel has always had a conflicted relationship with gambling, as evidenced by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s 2016 announcement of plans to study the possibility of authorizing up to four casinos in the tourist-friendly area of Eilat.
Netanyahu’s plans were met with fierce pushback from the country’s finance minister, who has also led the push to close slot machines in lottery shops operated by state-run monopoly Mifal Hapayis.
Also consider the furor that greeted a 2015 media report which claimed Knesset member Oren Hazan once ran a casino in Bulgaria. Hazan sued Channel 2 News over the report, which also claimed he’d done methamphetamine with some of his high-rolling gamblers and supplied them with prostitutes.
Throughout the legal proceedings, Hazan furiously denied that he’d acted as the casino’s manager, despite the court ultimately concluding last October that documents and testimony proved his casino management role “beyond the shadow of a doubt.” Good thing he’s a politician and not a policeman, otherwise he’d be in real trouble.