A bill addressing the proliferation of illegal firearms in the Israel-Arab sector was approved to proceed to second and third Knesset readings on Wednesday in a joint session by the National Security Committee and the Constitution, Law and Justice Committee.
Rejections to the law were rejected and the bill was unanimously accepted by the committee members, according to the committee spokesperson. The Knesset has less than a week and a half to vote on the bill before its spring recess.
If approved by the Knesset in the two readings, for one year, police officers would be able to search houses suspected of containing illegal weapons without a judge's order or approval of a police superintendent. The bill would also allow for the seizure of materials that could present as evidence of weapon offenses, such as documents or cameras.
Law enforcement would be required to report to the National Security Committee and Attorney-General about the law's use three times in the year it was in effect.
The punishment for those caught with illegal firearms would be increased, with a maximum prison sentence of five years. The punishment could not be less than two-and-a-half.
Is the bill useful for police activity?
Committee chairman Zvika Fogel said that the bill would strengthen law enforcement and serve as a deterrent to criminals.
"There is no intention to harm the rights of the individual, but these rights also belong to the victims, and not only those who enter their homes," said Fogel. "We will examine the law at the end of a year to see what needs to be added and what needs to be subtracted."
Otzma Yehudit MK Yitzhak Kreuzer submitted the original bill.