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(photo credit:screen shot)
The Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) dismissed claims over the weekend that its
agents had “tortured” far-right activist Haim Pearlman, suspected of murdering
four Palestinians and attempting to murder seven more. The Shin Bet said the
allegations were part of a smear-campaign being waged by the suspects and their
supporters against the organization.
Haim Pearlman was arrested earlier
in July for the murder of four Arab residents of east Jerusalem, who were
stabbed to death between 1998 to 2004.
David Sitbon, an acquaintance, was
also arrested last week on suspicion of stealing a weapon from an IDF base and
passing it on to Pearlman.
On Friday, attorney Sharon Nahari, who
represents Pearlman, emerged from his first meeting with the suspect at a Shin
Bet facility. The meeting was made possible by a Supreme Court ruling on
Thursday which permitted Pearlman, along with Sitbon, to meet with their
“Haim told him about the difficult torture he is undergoing,
both physically and psychologically,” read a statement by Honenu, a group that
provides legal assistance to Israeli Jews suspected of involvement in violent
attacks against Arabs.
“Pearlman said he was cuffed to a chair for 18
hours every day. Shin Bet interrogators shouted into one ear for hours on end
that he is a murderer, and into into his other ear they shouted that he should
confess,” Nahari said.
Honenu added that Pearlman claimed he had been
beaten repeatedly by “three thugs.”
“Of course, they beat him without
leaving scars, so that the judges don’t notice,” Honenu said.
was told by his interrogators that his wife “no longer wants to be him,” and
made derogatory references to his wife, his attorney said.
denied any wrongdoing in a Channel 2 interview broadcast shortly before his
arrest, has maintained his right to silence since being taken into
On Friday, the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court released Yossi
Sitbon, brother of the second suspect. The former had been arrested Tuesday for
attempting to block a road in order to prevent the vehicle carrying his brother
and Pearlman to court. Yossi Sitbon was placed under a 30-day restraining order
aimed at preventing him from carrying out similar actions.
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