Maoz’s cellmate testifies in murder trial
Lawyers for man accused of murdering parents try to discredit witness by showing graphic videos found in witness’s phone.
Daniel Maoz takes witness stand Photo: MELANIE LIDMAN
The dramatic double murder trial of Daniel Maoz, who is suspected of stabbing
his parents to death in 2011 in their Ramot apartment, took a turn for the
surreal on Wednesday when Maoz’s defense lawyers tried to discredit a witness by
showing graphic videos and inappropriate songs found in the witness’s
Roni Ben-Arbon, 38, is accused of aiding his former prison
cellmate, Maoz, by sending a letter claiming that an additional anonymous
witness saw Maoz’s brother, Nir, leave their parent’s house on the night of the
The letter was sent July 10 to state prosecutor Yuval Kaplinsky,
the Jerusalem District Court and Maoz’s defense lawyer, David Barhoom. In the
letter – obtained by the media – the anonymous tipster writes that he heard
screaming and then saw Nir Maoz run out of his parents’ home at 11
“There is no way this could be wrong! It was definitely Nir Maoz,”
the tipster wrote.
During the investigation, Ben-Arbon, who met Maoz in
prison, admitted he helped send the letter. He told police Maoz had promised
that, once he was released, he would reward Ben-Arbon financially. Ben- Arbon
was serving time for traffic infractions, according to police.
Wednesday, Ben- Arbon said police officers threatened him during the
investigation, and he gave them “the answers I thought they wanted to hear,” in
order to get out of jail to see his six-year-old daughter. He insisted that he
did not write the letter, although he did print it and mail it.
effort to discredit Ben-Arbon and prove that he wrote the letter individually
without direction from Maoz, Barhoom showed a number of graphic videos taken
from Ben-Arbon’s cell phone, causing the audience in the courtroom to shift
uncomfortably and look away. In all of the drama surrounding the muchhyped
trial, the video clips and inappropriate songs marked a new level of weirdness
for the dozen reporters covering the trial.
Police have accused Maoz of
stabbing his parents, Nurit and Noah Maoz, to death with a kitchen knife in
their home on August 11, 2011 in an attempt to get an inheritance to pay off
massive gambling debts.
He was arrested a month after the murders, but in
a surprising move, he accused his twin brother, Nir, of carrying out the
murders. The identical twins share DNA, which was found at the site of the