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Meretz MK protests ‘lenient’ sentence for IDF officer convicted of indecent acts
By YAAKOV LAPPIN
03/12/2013
Convicted officer sentenced to 40 days community service and to pay compensation to victims, but will still receive army pension and other benefits.
 
MK Michal Roisin (Meretz) wrote to IDF Chief-of-Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz on Tuesday to protest the “soft” sentence given to an IDF officer convicted of carrying out indecent acts toward three female subordinates.

According to a Ynet report on Monday, the officer, who held the rank of lieutenant-colonel, was sentenced by a military court to 40 days of community service, ordered to pay thousands of shekels in compensation to each female soldier and was demoted to the rank of captain.

The officer will leave the IDF but is expected to receive an army pension and other benefits due to a pensioner of his military rank, according to the report.

Roisin, chairwoman of the Knesset Lobby for Equality in Employment and the former head of the Association of Rape Crisis Centers in Israel, urged Gantz to ensure IDF courts “recognize the severity of sexual violence towards female soldiers.”

“A verdict like this, which is scandalously soft on a senior officer who carried out indecent acts against three young women subordinate to him, can cause significant damage to the ongoing struggle for gender equality and an environment free from sexual violence and sexual harassment in the IDF,” wrote Roisin.

Noting that the court found the officer had carried out the offenses systematically, over a prolonged period, exploiting his senior position, Roisin called on Gantz “to use your authority urgently in order to ensure that cases like this don’t occur in the IDF, and don’t receive legitimacy from any elements in the IDF.”

She added that military courts should reflect the gravity of such offenses in their verdicts.

The IDF Spokesman’s Office did not reply for a request for comment by press time.
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