State Attorney does not want to mediate petition on whistleblower cop

State Attorney Moshe Lador told the High Court of Justice on Sunday he did not want to serve as a mediator between the top echelon of the police and Dep.-Cmdr. Ephraim Ehrlich, who petitioned the High Court against his appointment as deputy head of the Hebron police department. On April 28, a panel of three justices including Edmond Levy, Miriam Na'or and Elyakim Rubinstein suggested that Lador try to resolve the dispute if both sides agreed. But Lador, represented by Attorney Dina Zilber, told the court he had to maintain close and ongoing relations with the police and that the role suggested by the court could have a negative impact on his work relations with the police. Secondly, he said, it was not clear precisely what kind of procedure the court had in mind. If he examined Ehrlich's appointment in the current round of reshuffling, he would also have to examine the appointments of all 70 police officers who were given new jobs. He added that it was fundamentally problematic for an outsider to be deeply involved in the appointment and promotion procedures in a professional and hierarchical body like the police. Ehrlich was serving as head of the Central Unit of the Police Traffic Department when he was appointed Deputy Hebron police chief. In the petition, which he filed together with The Movement for Quality Government (MQG), Ehrlich accused the police of punishing him for going to the media with allegations that Dep.-Cmdr. Yoram Levy, head of the Central Unit in the Southern District, had tried to bury a file involving allegations against the Perinian brothers and that he had close connections with the suspected underworld figures. His disclosure of these allegations to the Uvda television program led to the establishment of the Zeiler Committee, which investigated the affair. Ehrlich and the MQG charged that the new appointment "sidetracked him from the professional track he had been on until now. They have forced him into a job for which he has no experience in such a way that it is obvious to all that the appointment was meant to delay or harm his advancement." The petitioners wrote that Ehrlich was being punished "for having, for many years, spoken up against fundamental flaws in the conduct of police officers including senior officers, which, in some of the cases, amounted to serious corruption." They added that a number of senior police officers resented the fact that he went to the media to reveal the Perinian affair and that his action had led to the establishment of the Zeiler Committee.