Detainee prohibited from meeting with attorney

Attorney Ariel Atari

Monday, May 6, 2024, 18:13 After five days of intensive GSS interrogations, during which the detainee suspected of involvement with the alleged death of a Hamas activist met with his attorneys, today (Monday), the GSS prohibited him from meeting with them for the next three days. The order was given after the court rejected a request from the GSS for a 15-day-remand extension and extended it by only three days. The detainee was interrogated for six hours on Shabbat, and he was shackled to a chair for many hours. Honenu engaged the services of Attorney Ariel Atari and Attorney Asaf Gonen to represent the detainee.

This morning, during the Jerusalem Magistrates Court hearing, it turned out that neither the GSS nor the Israel Police have obtained the death certificate of the alleged deceased, and there are no test results indicating the circumstances of his death. Although the lack of this information was revealed at the previous hearing, no information was presented at this hearing either. At the close of the hearing, Judge Gad Ehrenberg ruled that, “There are no grounds to agree to the request as presented by the GSS. The case against the accused must be supported by better evidence for the court to consider a prolonged remand extension such as the investigating unit is requesting.”

The detainee is a 35-year-old married Beit El resident, a father of three who does not have a criminal record. Until recently, he served as a combat soldier in the reserves. He was detained last Thursday on suspicion of involvement in the death of a Hamas activist. He arrived at the GSS offices in Petah Tikva for a meeting to which he had been summoned. He was told that he was not suspected of any crime. For many hours he was asked to cooperate with the Jewish Department of the GSS and give information and background information about incidents involving residents of Yehuda and Shomron. He refused. Late in the evening, he was informed that he was being detained on suspicion of involvement in a murder.

The detainee’s attorneys strongly criticized the order prohibiting meeting with an attorney:
Attorney Asaf Gonen: “Once again the GSS has severely violated the basic rights of a detainee, particularly in this case where there is no reasonable suspicion and the evidence against him is extremely weak. The use of the order is unacceptable and dangerous.”

Attorney Ariel Atari: “After we appealed the decision to extend the detainee’s remand by three days due to the absence of reasonable suspicion, the GSS completely lost their senses. The GSS revealed its failures when they detained the Beit El resident even though he was not a suspect. Only after he refused to talk with the interrogators, did the GSS attempt to save face by using unreasonable force to illegally exact false testimony. The fact that the GSS is seen to be acting on behalf of a Hamas terrorist is outrageous, particularly at this time. We will do everything in our power to return the detainee to his wife and children as soon as possible.”

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