(photo credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS)
A man who confessed to producing two Internet videos that featured calls to murder deputy state attorney Shai Nitzan and Defense Minister Ehud Barak expressed regret over his actions in court on Wednesday.
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Uri Bar’am of Ra’anana was arrested late Tuesday night by the police’s Serious and International Crimes Unit, and was questioned until 5 a.m.
Bar’am, reportedly a right-wing activist, at first denied making the videos, but then confessed, adding that his intention had been to shed light on the dangers of incitement.
“I take full responsibility, and I am ashamed of the result,” Bar’am said during his own remand hearing. “I acted impulsively and with haughtiness. I seek forgiveness from Shai Nitzan and the minister of defense.”
Bar’am added that he had “undergone a very deep experience during the night.”
“We really do have incredible police officers, and I regret everything I have done and seek forgiveness,” he said.
The police representative to the court, Supt. Yishai Cohen, told Judge Nitza Mimon Sha’ashua that “this investigation began two days ago into incitement to murder,” adding that “the investigation is at its beginning... the suspect has confessed to the suspicions against him, and submitted two written statements.”
Cohen added that police considered Bar’am a public threat, and that releasing him could jeopardize the evidence-gathering stage of the investigation. He requested that the court keep Bar’am in custody for 10 days.
Zion Amir, the defendant’s attorney, countered by saying that his client had expressed regret for his actions and had not intended to harm public officials.
“He has no partners... and therefore he cannot disrupt the investigation,” Amir added.
Sha’ashua concluded with a decision to keep Bar’am in custody for six days.
“The investigation has not yet been completed, and many steps need to be taken,” the judge wrote in her ruling.
The latest video released by Bar’am shows images of anarchists making threatening remarks against Barak, followed by slogans written in red letters calling for Barak’s head “to be placed on a peg.”
“This man is a son of death and he must be murdered,” the message continues, lamenting “this garbage of a peace.”
Later in the video, a message appears, saying, “We are concerned
citizens who are witnessing the State of Israel losing its sanity. The
severe incitement is found on every side of the political divide and it
must be opposed with all force.”