Lawyer Ariel Atari speaks to Daniel Maoz in court 311.
(photo credit: MELANIE LIDMAN)
An indictment filed on Tuesday in the Jerusalem District Court describes how Daniel Maoz researched how to murder his parents on the Internet, with the goal of obtaining inheritance money to pay off massive gambling debts.
As well as the two counts of murder, 28-year-old Maoz is also charged with cleaning up the crime scene to destroy evidence against him.
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A Tel Aviv resident, Maoz was increasingly desperate after running up hundreds of thousands of shekels in debt from gambling in card casinos, state prosecutors claim.
According to the indictment, filed by state attorney Yuval Kaplinsky of the Jerusalem District Attorney’s Office, on August 13 Maoz hatched a plot to commit the double parricide to get the money he needed to pay off his debts.
As part of that plan, he spent five hours on the Internet that afternoon researching the legal and financial implications of murder on inheritances.
The sites Maoz visited described various murders, including a case in which a woman attempted to kill her mother for inheritance money, and another describing a racially motivated murder.
Later that evening, at around 9 p.m., according to the indictment, Maoz drove from his apartment in Tel Aviv to his parents’ house in the Ramot neighborhood of Jerusalem. Maoz spent around two hours with his parents, 60-year-old Nurit Maoz, who worked at the Justice Ministry, and 64-year-old Noah Maoz, who worked at a dentists’ office. At around 11 p.m., however, he allegedly suddenly went into the kitchen, took a 30-centimeter knife, and launched a vicious attack on his father. As Noah tried to fight back, he yelled at his wife Nurit to call the police.
Nurit, who had been upstairs, heard the commotion and rushed to help her husband. Maoz turned the knife on her, stabbing his mother multiple times, according to the charges.
The indictment describes the large number of horrific stab wounds Maoz inflicted on his parents, both of whom died at the scene.
Immediately after the murders, Maoz allegedly washed the knife and then drove back to Tel Aviv, where he threw the knife in a garbage can outside his home.
Several hours later, at around 3 a.m., Maoz then drove back to his parents’ home in Jerusalem and cleaned up the crime scene, washing the floor with bleach to destroy any evidence connecting him to the murders, according to the indictment.
As part of that clean-up, Maoz allegedly took another knife from the kitchen, and used it to scrape under Noah’s and Nurit’s fingernails, fearing that traces of his DNA had been left there after the couple fought back against their son’s knife attack.
Afterwards, Maoz stole NIS 1,000 in cash from his father’s wallet and left his parents’ home for the final time.
Maoz was arrested on September 11, almost a month after the murders. Police had initially investigated various leads including that the killing was carried out for nationalist motives.
Meanwhile, in a hearing at the Jerusalem District Court on Tuesday morning, Judge Orit Efaal-Gabay ruled to extend Maoz’s remand pending a further hearing on November 11.
During Tuesday’s hearing, state attorney Yuval Kaplinsky told the court that a witness who had met Maoz on the night of the murder testified that Maoz had a cut on his hand and had acted strangely.
Maoz’s blood had also been found at the scene, Kaplinsky noted.
“There is no satisfactory explanation for that spot of blood other than the possibility that [Maoz] bled at the scene during the day of the murder,” said Kaplinsky.
In his version, Maoz has denied committing the murder but claims to have been present at the murder scene, and said he later returned to clean up the apartment because he was concerned he would be connected with the slayings.