Last abettor to Barkan terrorist sentenced

For a list of posts about Honenu’s representation of the Levengrond-Yehezkel and Hajbi families in the Barkan terror attack case, please click here.

Wednesday, March 9, 2022, 9:55 On October 7, 2018, Ashraf Walid Na’alwa shot and murdered Ziv Hajbi, Hy”d, and Kim Levengrond-Yehezkel, Hy”d, in a terror attack at his place of work, the Alon factory in the Barkan Industrial Park. Na’alwa had purchased a Carlo submachine gun and planned the attack well in advance. After the attack, he fled and was killed approximately two months later near Shechem while attempting to evade capture by IDF soldiers. Numerous abettors, among them Muhamed Ibrahim Kharsa and Abdallah Fouad Mustafa Mahmoud, assisted Na’alwa, before and after the attack.

In early March 2022, Judge Lieutenant Colonel Samzar Shagog imposed a four-year active prison sentence, a one-year suspended prison sentence, and payment of 50,000 NIS in compensation to the victims’ families on Abed al-Rahman Mazen Abada, the last abettor to be convicted of failure to prevent the October 2018 Barkan terror attack. Honenu Attorney Chayim Bleicher followed the trial and assisted the victims’ families throughout the hearings.

After the sentencing, Bleicher stated, “The long battle fought by Rafi, the father of, Kim Levengrond-Yehezkel, Hy”d, brought about a change in outlook in the military courts and they are imposing prison sentences approaching the maximum according to law. Despite this change, we are of the opinion that not enough has been done, and that the court must impose the maximum penalty on the abettor, five years’ imprisonment. There is also an urgent need for more stringent legislature pertaining to abettors to terror, with the understanding that terrorists act in an environment of terror and only extremely stiff penalties for all accomplices and abettors will prevent terror attacks.”

In his ruling, Judge Lt.Col. Shagog wrote: “The defendant could have acted to prevent the crime, and even fulfilled his legal duty, with one anonymous phone call to the police. If he did not do that, then he did not do it, not because he feared for his fate, but rather because of his indifference to the fate of dozens of other people, and perhaps also out of support for their injury.”

Judge Lt.Col. Shagog related to the severity of Abada’s actions: “The defendant’s knowledge [of the planned attack] was of an extremely high level. Beyond the fact that Ashraf Na’alwa told him that he planned a shooting at his place of work in Barkan, and described to him details of the plan, he showed him his weapon and discussed with him the ammunition he had obtained for the purpose of carrying out the attack. The terrorist described in detail to the defendant how he planned to bring the weapon to his place of work in a backpack and that he intended to group a number of workers together and shoot them.

“For approximately one month, the defendant was in continuous contact with the terrorist and there is not one sign that he attempted to convince him not to carry out the attack or expressed disgust or had reservations with taking the lives of innocent people. Moreover, the defendant knew about the terrorist’s escape plan and was asked by him to remember where he was going to hide, so that he could assist him if need be after he carried out the murder.”

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