There has been another dramatic development in the murder of 19-year-old Shelly Dadon of Afula, a case which has bedeviled the Shin Bet and northern district police for the past month an a half, The Jerusalem Post has learned.

Details of the development can still not be published and it will be up to a Nazareth court on Monday to decide whether or not to lift a gag order on the case.

Police have drawn widespread criticism in Afula and beyond for their inability to solve the murder, partly because days after the killing Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharanovitch said that there had been a “dramatic development” and he expected the case to be solved soon. Soon after, the trail ran cold.

In addition, police said early on that the killing was most likely “nationalist” – a terror attack – a certainty they have since backed down from.

As of Monday, it is still unclear whether the murder was a terror attack or criminal in nature.

Dadon was found dead on May 1 in the Migdal Ha’emek industrial district after she had vanished on the way to a job interview.

Since the death, the family has held protests demanding not only that police find the killers, but also that Israel stop the practice of releasing convicted murderers in order to free kidnapped Israelis.

Dadon’s cousin Assaf Sarid said on Monday that no official police or Shin Bet official had updated them on the development, and that “we’re living off rumors too, that’s all we have. That and what we see in the news or what reporters tell us when they call.”

Sarid said that the kidnappings of three teens in the West Bank on Thursday night added extra concern for the family, along with the possibility that if Dado’s killing was a nationalist crime, her killers or others like them will someday be released in exchange for the boys.

“We are hoping very much that if there is a [prisoner] release that the ones released won’t be ones with blood on their hands.”

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