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Former Israeli President Moshe Katsav was convicted for raping a former employee when he was a cabinet minister two decades ago, and for sexually harassing two other women during his time as president. (AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner, File)

A parole board ruled Sunday that former Israeli President Moshe Katsav will be released from prison after serving five years of his seven-year sentence for rape. The now-71-year-old could be free and on parole as early as next week, according to multiple reports.

The former Israeli leader’s attorney had submitted two unsuccessful parole requests in the past. Zion Amir, Katsav’s lawyer, said his client broke down crying when he heard the news on Sunday.

Katsav has maintained his innocence for nearly two decades since the first incident happened in the 1990s. In 2007, he resigned from his post as president after being charged with rape and sexual harassment.

Katsav was convicted for raping a former employee when he was a cabinet minister two decades ago, and for sexually harassing two other women during his time as president.

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