Case cracked in Dimona arson

Police made good on their promise to bring the suspects in the torching of a policeman's car to trial.

The Southern District Police made good on a promise from earlier this month to bring the suspects in the torching of a Dimona policeman's car to trial, with the delivery Thursday of an indictment against town residents Meir Azulai and Ya'akov Azarzi, both suspected of carrying out the arson. Three weeks ago, the new Mazda 5 of Dimona Station intelligence coordinator Shimon Naim was torched outside of his apartment. At the time, Southern District Police Chief Cmdr. Uri Bar-Lev dispatched large police forces to the Negev city, enlisting an elite investigative unit and ordering that they crack the case within a week. But only on Thursday, with the delivery of the indictment of Azulai and Azarzi, did police give the okay to publicize the fact that less than a week after the incident, both suspects were already behind bars. Initially, prosecutors said, Azulai told Azarzi to take the fall for the arson attack, which Azarzi did. But Azarzi, said police, was far from the willing martyr for his friend. At one point, Azarzi allegedly made a show of asking a police officer for his weapon and threatened a detective, telling him, "Every bullet has an address - watch out." Later, he told another detective that "he would dig his grave". Azarzi will face an additional charge for the alleged threats. Bar-Lev expressed satisfaction with the indictment Thursday. "I said then and I'll say it again - anyone who raises their hand against police or against a judge will find it swiftly cut off," he said. Bar-Lev added that the investigation had been - like many high-profile cases - accompanied by a prosecutor throughout all of its stages to ensure a strong indictment. Naim reiterated to his commanders that he had no intention of leaving his job as a result of the intimidation against him.