Israel Police "brutally" beat an IDF soldier during his arrest. The Military Police Criminal Investigation Division then concealed the evidence - his lawyers claimed on Saturday night.
L., a soldier in a classified unit in the Air Force, was arrested over the weekend on suspicion of possessing several grams of cannabis during a vacation.
Having already been handcuffed, police officers - according to his lawyers - acted with "severe violence." The police claimed that they used "reasonable force" on him after he began to act up. Another hearing on his case is expected on Sunday.
Attorneys Ofir and Limor Bramley, representing the soldier, said: "On Friday morning, our client, a soldier serving in a classified unit in the Air Force, was arrested by Israel Police detectives on suspicion of possessing a small number of soft drugs. During the arrest, the police brutally beat our client on all parts of his body and continued to beat him wildly even after he was handcuffed.
"The police were not satisfied with this," they added, "and even took care to press on the handcuffs already on his wrists - to hurt him in response to his trying to document the violent arrest. When he was transferred for interrogation by the IDF, we asked the military police investigators to document the bruises on his body so that he could file a complaint with the Justice Ministry’s Police Investigation Department (PID).
"To our amazement, IDF investigators refused to photograph him without giving any explanation. Our client is working to file a complaint regarding the use of severe violence against him by the PID against the violent police officers."
They added that "the decision not to photograph L. near the time the incident took place when the marks were still 'fresh on his body' is for us a classic omission of evidence. The judge understood that this was a serious incident and therefore ordered the IDF to photograph it immediately so that a complaint could be filed in the matter."
The Israel Police report reads: "During a routine patrol, police noticed a vehicle they suspected of containing drugs headed to a drug deal. After the suspicion arose, police intended to search the vehicle. In response, the suspect started yelling and shouting while trying to escape the scene.
"Police began to arrest the suspect who resisted and went on a rampage, so force, by their authority and according to law, was used against him. We will continue to enforce the law and fight the drug scourge with an emphasis on drug traffickers and distributors."
The IDF spokesman stated that "the suspect was arrested by Israel Police officers on Thursday night on suspicion of possession of dangerous drugs, not for personal consumption, use of dangerous drugs, driving under the influence and interfering with a police officer and was transferred to the Military Police Criminal Investigation Division for questioning."
"The suspect's detention was extended by a military tribunal until September 26, 2021, for investigative purposes," added the IDF Spokesperson's Unit. "The suspect's allegations of violence against him by Israel Police officers were documented by Military Police Criminal Investigation Division investigators immediately upon his arrival at the Military Police Criminal Investigation Division. Later, the suspect was photographed at his request."