Barkan case: Complaint filed over coordinating testimonies

Thursday, July 18, 2019, 11:34 Rafi Levengrond, the father of Kim Levengrond-Yehezkel, Hy”d, who was murdered in the Barkan terror attack of October 2018, filed a complaint with the police against Meirav Houri, the attorney representing accused family members of the terrorist, for coordinating testimonies and disrupting legal proceedings.
Levengrond stated that the fact that Houri is representing the mother of the terrorist, and also his father and his brother raises suspicions. Two months ago Levengrond filed a complaint on the matter with the Israeli Bar Association, to which he has not yet received a reply. Following the deliberation which took place on Wednesday, July 17, in the case of the terrorist’s brother, Levengrond decided to file an additional complaint, this time with the police.
At the July 17 deliberation Levengrond informed Judge Rinat Levi Moskowitz that Attorney Meirav Houri was representing the accused members of the terrorist’s family and that she was the only one visiting them in remand and thus was coordinating testimonies between them, which constitutes disrupting legal proceedings. Upon hearing his statement Houri said aloud, “Yes, I am coordinating testimonies.” In response Levengrond filed a complaint against her with the police.
In his complaint to the Israeli Bar Association Levengrond described the crime: “After the murder [in Barkan] the father, the mother and the brother of the terrorist were detained, and against all three of them indictments were filed on the grounds that they were aware of the terrorist’s intent to carry out an attack and did not prevent it or report him to the security forces. As a victim of terror I have been attending most of the deliberations, and I was surprised to discover that the three family members were being represented by the same attorney, who is handling the trial for all three of them simultaneously, when the defendants are serving as witnesses for the prosecution in each other’s trials.”
In his complaint Levengrond mentioned an example from one of the deliberations: “At a hearing against the father of the terrorist… the brother and the mother of the terrorist testified. During the hearing Houri cross-examined the witnesses, while she was their attorney for the same matter. It was obvious that she was completely coordinated with the witnesses and thereby disrupting legal proceedings.”
Also in the complaint: “Additionally there was an instance in which the mother of the terrorist and his brother claimed that they had asked the father to prevent the son from carrying out the attack, thereby removing from themselves responsibility and placing the blame on the father. It cannot be that the same attorney represents all of the defendants when they place responsibility on one another. This is either a conflict of interest or an attempt by the defendants to disrupt the entire proceedings through their attorney.”
Another example occurred when Houri cross-examined the mother of the terrorist: “The mother requested that she [Houri] obtain the minutes of the trial which was being held against her in the courtroom, and so Houri served simultaneously as the cross-examiner for a witness for the prosecution and as her attorney.”
Levengrond concluded his complaint by mentioning that, “They are partners in a terror attack in which they killed my daughter, who had done nothing wrong. It is hard for me to understand how there is an attorney who is willing to defend people like this, but if she is representing them, she should at least do it legally.”
Rafi Levengrond demanded action from the police: “I expect the police to act immediately, to summon Houri in order to examine the matter. If it is criminal, she should be detained. There has already been the precedent of Attorney Tariq Bargut, who was detained with Zakaria Zubeidi. Things like this have already occurred. Let’s examine the case properly.”
Levengrond mentioned the security cameras in the terrorist’s house: “I want to receive the video footage that was in the family’s security cameras, to examine what happened. Someone lives in a house with his brother, and his brother opens fire outside. He didn’t hear? Didn’t know? Didn’t see that he was photographed with a soldier’s uniform? That he was a member of Fatah? Sounds strange. Another thing. Why don’t I have cameras in my house? I don’t know anyone who has cameras in their house. For what did they install cameras? That’s already suspicious. I demand that this be be thoroughly examined.”
Levengrond concluded his statement: “It could be that Judge [Levi Moskowitz] reached erroneous conclusions because the attorney coordinated testimonies. Let’s examine why the judge made the decision that she made. My daughter’s blood is thicker than water. This won’t pass quietly.”

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