The Justice Ministry on Thursday announced that all cases relating to the social justice protests, which would include leader Daphni Leef, were being reevaluated by Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein.
The Jerusalem Post has learned that the initial reevaluation is to be complete in approximately one week.
Leef became nationally famous as the face of the summer 2011 social justice tent protest movement, which at one point had accumulated hundreds of thousands of protesters – with some setting up tents in public areas. Among other things, they protested against poor housing and living options, especially for the lower class sector but also for the middle class.
The announcement defied reports that Weinstein had already decided to close the Leef case and other cases, instead leaving all of the cases in limbo, while also creating the impression that many, or all, of the cases will be closed.
The statement did not mention Leef, though much of the critical media coverage of the police has centered around her case.
According to the announcement, the police’s independent prosecution team and the state attorney’s office met with Weinstein on Tuesday to debate whether to continue or close the cases.
The State Attorney’s Office had refused to file the Leef case, as well as some other cases, forcing the police to use its own legal team.
Weinstein could have decided to close the cases or to indefinitely freeze the cases, but did neither.
Instead, he said that he has asked the State Attorney’s Office to reevaluate all of the cases, in light of the passage of time and the public interest.
The statement adamantly defended the police, saying that the reevaluation did not reflect the police’s conduct or the separate questions about the correctness of filing the cases when they were filed.
The police had already announced late Sunday that they were reviewing cases relating to the social justice movement protests, and, therefore, were delaying the Leef case’s planned hearing for Monday.
Subsequently, the court spokesman issued an official postponement of the trial but, in a nearly unprecedented fashion, provided no adjournment date.
Also, early Saturday night, the Justice Ministry abruptly canceled a planned Sunday press briefing with Weinstein about the case. The Justice Ministry spokesman said the meeting was postponed at the direct request of Police Insp.-Gen. Yohanan Danino.
Police had accused Leef of “using force” and resisting arrest, and she had countered that police improperly roughed her up at a June 2012 protest, however, the police’s case is based on a police officer’s word that he saw Leef push another officer, who did not himself report being pushed.