Israeli court convicts prominent tycoon of securities fraud

An Israeli court has convicted one of the country's most prominent businessmen of securities fraud.

The Tel Aviv District Court on Monday found former IDB Holding Corp. controlling shareholder Nochi Dankner guilty of carrying out millions of dollars' worth of fraudulent transactions in an attempt to influence the share price of the troubled company.

IDB, whose holdings include a major mobile phone carrier and a leading supermarket chain, took on millions of dollars in debts following a series of bad business deals. The courts wrestled control of IDB away from Dankner as a result.

Dankner, a favorite of Israel's business community, was often credited with helping rescue Israel's economy at the height of a Palestinian uprising. Under his leadership IDB became Israel's largest holding company and Dankner became a celebrity.