GSS brought detainee from Haifa court to Ashkelon court, without cause

Tuesday, February 22, 2022, 20:08 At a hearing today (Tuesday), Ashkelon Magistrates Court Judge Dorit Bonda leveled criticism at the GSS for bringing a detainee to a hearing in Ashkelon after the Haifa Magistrates Court had ruled the previous week that there was no nationalistic motive in the case, and therefore there was no need for the GSS to handle the investigation. In her decision, Judge Bonda quoted the claim made by Honenu Attorney Adi Keidar, who represented the detainee: “As the proceedings at the Haifa Magistrates Court progressed and concluded, but not to the satisfaction of the investigating unit [GSS], they chose a forum suitable to them to handle the rest of the case. This was an attempt, not in good faith, to bring about a different outcome than that which had been decided by the Haifa Magistrates Court.”

At the hearing, the GSS representatives agreed to return the case to the Haifa Magistrates Court. Judge Bonda censured the GSS for their attempt to change the outcome of the case: “On the face of it, from the start there were no grounds to open a request for detention in this court.”

Honenu Attorney Adi Keidar: “There is a gag order on the details of this case. The court leveled sharp criticism at the GSS and accepted the claim by the defense that the investigating unit chose to go ‘forum shopping’ in order to change judges after the first judge in the first court handed down a decision. The court very strongly censured the GSS and transferred the case to the authorized court, as the defense requested.”

The Ashkelon Magistrates Court extended the detainees remand by one day, significantly less than the12-day extension that the GSS had requested. The prohibition to meet with an attorney will expire at midnight tonight (Tuesday), however the GSS intends to extend it.

During the hearing, the detainee complained to the court that the GSS was preventing him from laying tefillin and saying prayers. Judge Bonda ordered the GSS to allow him to perform religious practices, including tefillin and prayers.

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