Moshe Katsav
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Israel ex-President Katsav begins jail term for rape

The disgraced former Israeli President, Moshe Katsav, has arrived at Maasiyahu prison near Tel Aviv to begin a seven-year sentence for rape.

Leaving his home in the town of Kiryat Malachi, he insisted he was innocent and accused the state of "executing" him and "burying a man alive".

He was convicted a year ago, but was allowed to remain free while he appealed against the conviction.

Katsav, who turned 66 on Monday, resigned from the largely ceremonial post of president two weeks before his seven-year term was to expire in 2007, under a plea bargain that would have allowed him to escape a prison sentence.

Wyre Davies reports.

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