Cineworld Boss Mooky Greidinger Handed 6-Month Suspended Sentence And $28,000 Fine In Israel

Mooky Greidinger, CEO of exhibition giant Cineworld, has been handed a six-month suspended prison sentence and a £23,000 ($28,000) fine by Israeli officials over a breach of anti-trust law.

The suit was brought by the local competition authority which argued that Cineworld’s local distributor, Forum Film, did not provide eight movies over a ten-year period to the Tel Aviv-based Lev Cinema.

A regulatory filing to the London Stock Exchange by the company Monday stated that Cineworld agreed with the Israeli Anti-Trust Authority that it was in breach.

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The court fined Forum Film £150,000 ($184,000) and held Greidinger indirectly responsible for “ failing to prevent such breach.” Greidinger was given a £23,000 ($28,000) fine alongside a six-month suspended prison sentence conditional on him not having any further anti-trust offenses in the next 24 months. 

Deadline understands that the maximum fine for an individual in Israel for such a breach is £500. The maximum for a company is £1 million.

The LSE filing states that “The judgment is not expected to have any impact on the continued operations of Forum Film Ltd, Cineworld Group plc or Mooky Greidinger’s position as CEO of Cineworld Group plc.”

As Deadline reported in July, the case stems from the 2010 merger of Forum Film and another Israeli outfit, Matalon. Both had deals in place with the major Hollywood studios. Because of the scale of the companies, the competition authority placed conditions on the deal. One of those was to supply all wide-release titles to cinemas in Israel that requested them. Some 600 movies have since been released via the companies.

The Lev Cinema in Tel Aviv claimed that it was not provided with eight movies over the course of the intervening 10 years, and a court case ensued — which ultimately was shifted to criminal charges instead of a typical litigation settlement.

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