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42-year-old former state witness killed in TA

July 12, 2012 11:31

David Hakak, who incriminate 14 members of alleged crime organization in 2008, was not covered by witness protection.

Police at Tel Aviv Central Bus Station

Police at Tel Aviv Central Bus Station 370. (photo credit:Ricardo Mallaco)

A 42-year-old man was shot and killed in his car from close range Wednesday night in Jaffa.

The victim, identified as David Hakak, was a former state’s witness.

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After he was shot, Hakak managed to drive a little further, before his car mounted a concrete slab and ground to a stop. Magen David Adom paramedics who arrived at the scene initiated CPR but were unable to resuscitate the victim, and pronounced him dead. Tel Aviv police arrived on the scene and launched a homicide investigation, marking bullet casings with yellow flags and gathering forensic evidence.

In 2008, Hakak turned state’s witness and incriminated 14 members of an alleged crime organization over extensive gambling activities. Homicide detectives are examining the possibility that the shooting could be linked to Hakak’s testimony, a Tel Aviv police source said, though other directions are being checked as well.

Hakak did not receive police protection and was not moved into hiding, as his testimony came before the launch of the witness protection program.

Even before the program came into being, police had offered some protection to witnesses under threat by placing patrol cars and officer near their homes. It remains unclear how threatened Hakak was before the shooting.

An attorney for one of the central figures convicted on the basis of Hakak’s testimony said that the murdered man was involved in many feuds, and that his client had no connection whatsoever to Wednesday night’s shooting.

Two criminals turned police informers were murdered in 2006.

The informers, one of whom has been named as Eyal Salhov, and a second informer whose name is still being withheld, were shot dead in the same year, and no suspects have been arrested for the slayings to date.
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