JERUSALEM -- A multimillionaire Israeli celebrity rabbi with a following in the U.S. has accepted a plea bargain in a high-profile bribery case and could face a year in prison, an Israeli official said Wednesday, bringing closer an end to one of the rabbi's various legal sagas.
As part of the plea bargain, the official said, Rabbi Yoshiyahu Yosef Pinto will admit to bribing a senior Israeli police officer in 2012 for access to his police file.
Israeli prosecutors will seek a year-long jail sentence for Pinto, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity pending an official announcement.
He said Pinto had also agreed to turn state's witness in a separate bribery case against another police officer who headed a unit known as Israel's FBI. That officer later resigned.
Pinto is considered one of Israel's wealthiest rabbis, amassing his fortune while serving as spiritual guru to the rich and powerful in Israel, New York, and elsewhere in the world. The Israeli edition of Forbes Magazine ranked him in 2012 as Israel's seventh richest rabbi, with an estimated net worth of about $19 million.
But the celebrity and riches also attracted the watchful eyes of law enforcement both in Israel and the U.S.