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Sara Netanyahu abused her houseman: Court

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara ©AFP

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's wife, Sara, has insulted and mistreated her housekeeping staff, a court has found after probing a complaint filed by a former employee.

The Jerusalem labor court on Wednesday ruled in favor of Meni Naftali, which means he is awarded NIS 170,000 (about USD 42,000) in damages and court costs.

The former chief caretaker at Netanyahu’s official residence said Sara Netanyahu had used abusive language when talking to him and insulted him.

According to the ex-employee, in one instance Mrs Netanyahu woke him up in the middle of the night to scold him for buying milk packaged in a plastic bag rather than in a carton.

He resigned four years ago after working for 20 months at Netanyahu’s residence.

The court said several other former employees also pointed to "abusive employment conditions at the prime minister's residence as a result of Mrs. Netanyahu's behavior and her attitude,” adding, “These included exaggerated demands, insults, humiliation and angry outbursts.”

Back in 2014, when the civil lawsuit was lodged against Sara, the Prime Minister's Office denied the claims of mistreatment as "evil, skewed gossip.”

In 2010, another case in which a housekeeper accused Sara of being abusive, was settled out of court.

She had called the allegations of maltreatment brought by Naftali as slander and lies and testified that she had very good relations with employees and that she treated them "with civility and politeness.”

However, the court said the evidence presented to it did not lead the tribunal to reach such conclusion. Mrs. Netanyahu ran the household in a "high-handed manner," it said, adding that "powerless” household staff were forced to work very long hours in the premier’s home.

Netanyahu’s wife has also come under fire for her lavish tastes.

The Netanyahu family has long faced scrutiny over accusations that their lifestyles are out of touch with regular Israelis.

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