Bar Refaeli’s large billboard advertisements for a clothing apparel company not only is an affront to religious Jews but is also a distraction for drivers on the road, an Ashkelon man who was arrested for vandalizing the billboards told police on Tuesday.

Ashkelon police arrested the suspect, who is religious, for allegedly defacing billboards and street ads featuring Refaeli in skimpy clothing, all part of a nationwide advertising blitz by the apparel designer Hoodies.

Police say they caught the suspect, 29, while he was in the process of defacing yet another advertisement. Law enforcement officials said that the suspect is responsible for vandalizing dozens of signs and ads.

“The reason for the vandalism is the insult that those ads represent to the religious public, which doesn’t wish to see the immodest dress [of Refaeli],” the suspect told police. “Those ads also disrupt the drivers on the road and it could cause them to lose concentration and even cause an accident.”

Police said that the suspect was freed after questioning, though limitations were placed on his freedom of movement.

The rash of vandalism first came to light earlier this month when passersby discovered that a large billboard featuring Refaeli which stands alongside a major highway between Tel Aviv and Herzliya was damaged by arsonists.

Firefighters who arrived on the scene at Glilot Junction also noticed graffiti. Vandals spray-painted a Star of David with the words “Am Yisrael Chai” (“The nation of Israel lives”) beside it.



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