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Dirani interrogator sues Defense Ministry
By JOANNA PARASZCZUK
01/22/2012
"Captain George" says Dirani's rape allegations harmed him, claims state hid evidence.
 
A former IDF interrogator who ran the investigation against Lebanese terrorist Mustafa Dirani filed a NIS 5.5 million lawsuit against the Defense Ministry in the Tel Aviv District Court on Sunday, claiming that he has suffered damages as a result of Dirani’s rape allegations.

Dirani, who was released as part of a prisoner exchange in 2004 and is now in Lebanon, is suing the state for NIS 6 million in damages, claiming that while in administrative detention in Israel, interrogators had raped him, sodomized him with a club, kept him naked for weeks and humiliated him in an effort to extract information about missing IAF navigator Ron Arad’s whereabouts.

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The interrogator, whose identity has not been revealed and who is known only by his nickname “Captain George,” served as an officer in Unit 504 of the IDF’s Intelligence Division and was appointed to the investigation against Dirani.

According to the lawsuit, filed by attorneys Efi Nave and Hila Bodik- Kochman, the state deliberately concealed one of the 47 tapes of Dirani’s interrogation. That tape allegedly shows that the commander of Captain George’s unit was the person responsible for interrogating and pressuring Dirani while the latter was naked, the lawsuit claims.

Captain George’s lawyers further argue that their client was harmed following Dirani’s allegations, which resulted in his employment in Unit 504 being terminated.

Nave told Channel 2 on Sunday that the state had “thrown [Captain George] to the dogs after years of concealing tapes showing that the unit commander is the one who interrogated Dirani and threatened him, and not [Captain George].”

Captain George’s civil lawsuit comes after the Supreme Court accepted a request by the state earlier this month for a further appeal hearing over Lebanese terrorist Mustafa Dirani’s NIS 6 million damages suit against Israel.

A majority Supreme Court decision in July dismissed the state’s appeal against a 2005 Tel Aviv District Court ruling that allowed Dirani to go ahead with his lawsuit against Israel. Dirani filed the lawsuit in the Tel Aviv District Court in 2000.

When the state appealed that ruling, asking for a further Supreme Court hearing, Deputy Supreme Court President Eliezer Rivlin agreed that an expanded panel of justices will review the question of whether Dirani should be allowed to proceed with his lawsuit against the state. The state has argued that the court should dismiss Dirani’s lawsuit outright in accordance with Anglo-American law, which prohibits enemies of the state residing in hostile countries from suing the state.

Dirani is a former leader of Lebanese Shi’ite terrorist group Amal, whose forces captured IAF navigator Lt.-Col. Ron Arad in October 1986 during a mission to attack PLO targets near Sidon in Lebanon. In 1994, Israeli special forces captured Dirani in Lebanon, believing he had personal knowledge of Arad’s whereabouts.

Dirani was released in 2004 as part of a prisoner exchange with Hezbollah, despite a High Court petition by Arad’s family to try to prevent his release. In return, Hezbollah returned the bodies of three IDF soldiers killed by Hezbollah in October 2000, together with kidnapped Israeli businessman Elhanan Tannenbaum.
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