Netanya mobster among three arrested for arson attacks

Charlie Abutbul: “I’ve already retired. I don’t understand why they arrested me.”

May 22, 2012 04:52
1 minute read.
Israeli police

Thinkstock Israeli police 370. (photo credit: Thinkstock)

Netanya underworld figure Charlie Abutbul and two other suspects were arrested Monday on suspicion of carrying out a string of arson attacks and an aggravated robbery as part of a feud with a rival crime organization.

“I’ve already retired. I don’t understand why they arrested me,” Abutbul told reporters at the Rishon Lezion Magistrate’s Court, where he was brought for a remand hearing.

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Abutbul said he told police all that he knew, and accused detectives of harassing members of his family.

“But I’m calm. I’m not worried,” he said.

The court extended all of the suspects’ custody by four days.

The investigation is being led by the Serious and International Crimes Unit, based at police headquarters in Jerusalem. Police said the alleged offenses related to incidents that occurred recently in Netanya, though they did not go into details.

In 2008, Abutbul was seriously wounded in an assassination attempt at a Netanya kiosk. Three civilians were lightly wounded in the shooting.

In 2010, unidentified men riding on a motorcycle shot at Abutbul in Netanya.

The Bat Haikar (Farmer’s Daughter) restaurant in Netanya’s industrial zone, which is owned by the Abutbul family, has been the target of several arson attacks.

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