Aharonovitch outraged over leak of police plans to arrest Bat Yam mayor

Aharonovitch outraged ov

Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch has expressed outrage over a tip off given to a small section of the press stating police plans to arrest Bat Yam Mayor Shlomo Lahiani on Monday. Channel 2 News broadcast pictures of the early morning arrest, showing a surprised Lahiani being greeted by officers outside of his home. "At least allow me to wake up the children," Lahiani asked of the policemen, several of whom followed him into his home, as a camera captured the scene. In a letter sent to Police Insp.-Gen. David Cohen on Tuesday, Aharonovitch demanded an inquiry be launched into how the cameramen found out about the arrest before it happened. "The 'documented' arrest... was unnecessary and inhumane," Aharonovitch wrote. "I did not want to see him arrested in the presence of cameras and microphones, I did not want to see him being told he was under arrest and asked to hand over his cell phone live on the air," he added. "As a reminder to you, I note that is not the first time an arrest or search has been carried out in the presence of cameras, and this ugly phenomenon demands harsh condemnation," Aharonovitch said. "I am asking you to conduct an internal check to prevent such incidents for reoccurring and to stress the regulations on incidents of this nature," the public security minister said. He added that other authorities, like the Tax Authority, were involved in the investigation, and that it was not necessarily the police which was at fault. "This is not a personal rebuke of the police inspector general, but a request for a check," the minister said. Responding to the remarks, police denied issuing any alerts to the press. "Doing so would be in complete violation of the instructions given by the attorney-general, who said that the dignity of all people - and the interests of the investigations - must be safe-guarded," police said.