Police insp.-gen. David Cohen 311.
(photo credit: Ben Hartman)
Israel Police Insp.-Gen. David Cohen testified before an inquest being held by
State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss on Monday into alleged negligence and a
possible cover up in the double homicide of two police informants in
The inquest has led to the suspension of the race for the next
police chief, after Lindenstrauss notified Public Security Minister Yitzhak
Aharonovitch that frontrunning candidate Cmdr.
Yohanan Danino, currently
head of the southern police district, was a subject of interest in the
Two criminals-turned-police agents – Eyal Salhov, of the Ruhan
crime organization, and a second agent from the Jarushi crime family, whose name
is still being withheld – were murdered in 2006. To date, no suspects have been
arrested for the slayings.
The inquiry was launched in 2009 following a
complaint by a former senior intelligence-gathering officer, Dep.-Cmdr. Yisrael
Abarbanel, who alleged that police had mishandled the affair, leading to the
agents’ exposure and murder, and that the episode had then been whitewashed by
Danino and Cohen were both criticized by Abarbanel. Police have
dismissed his claims as false and view his account as the rantings of an
embittered former officer.
“The police inspector-general addressed the
episode during his testimony. The meeting lasted around two-and-a-half hours,
and at its end, the police inspector-general said he ‘trusted the state
comptroller to get to the truth.
There is a wide gap between reports on
the issue and the actual facts,’” police said in a statement.
testimony to Lindenstrauss last week, as did Central District State Prosecutor
Rahel Shiber. The testimonies have been sent on to Attorney-General Yehuda
Weinstein, who will have the final say on whether Danino can take part in the
race for police chief.
“Many others who are linked to this episode will
give testimony in the coming days,” the spokesman said.