Moshe Katsav supreme court 6 - 465 R.
(photo credit: REUTERS/Baz Ratner )
Restrictions placed on former president Moshe Katsav by the Prison Parole Board are likely to remain in force until December 2018, when he is due to complete his seven-year sentence for rape and other sexual offenses as well as obstruction of justice.
Katsav, who served five years and 15 days of his sentence, was released from Ma’asiyahu Prison in Ramle last December on condition that he would continue his rehabilitation therapy, visit a psychologist once a week and attend daily Torah classes. He is also forbidden from making any statements to the media and from traveling abroad, and a curfew forbids him from leaving his house in Kiryat Malachi between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.
Katsav agreed to all these conditions essentially because he wanted to go home, but he did not want to be saddled with them for another two years.
In permitting Katsav early release, the Parole Board conceded that he had come a long way, but said that he still has a long way to go.
Katsav recently appealed to President Reuven Rivlin to lift the limitations, citing advancing age (he turns 72 in December) and good behavior in prison as considerations for his request.
Rivlin’s office on Sunday published a statement that made it clear that he had rejected Katsav’s appeal. Rivlin clarified that Katsav’s release from prison had been conditional, and therefore saw no vital reason to grant Katsav’s appeal, especially in light of the nature of the crimes with which he had been charged. Rivlin did not want to cause Katsav’s victims additional aggravation.
Rivlin’s predecessor in office, the late Shimon Peres, declared on many occasions that he would never be lenient with sex offenders, and Rivlin is inclined toward the same attitude.