Top lawyer killed in TA car bombing

Yoram Haham, 53, was recently recruited to defend suspected Netanya underworld boss Asi Abutbul.

Tel aviv car bomb 224.88 (photo credit: Channel 10)
Tel aviv car bomb 224.88
(photo credit: Channel 10)
A car bomb killed a lawyer in an SUV traveling northbound on Tel Aviv's busy Yigal Alon Street on Wednesday evening, police said, adding that the explosion appeared to be an underworld hit. The body was too badly burned to be immediately identified by forensics officers, but a police spokeswoman later said that the victim was Yoram Hacham, 53, a Tel Aviv lawyer. Israel Radio reported that he was a well-known lawyer in Tel Aviv who had represented many underworld figures, including Asi Aboutbul. Police has imposed a gag order on any further details of the investigation, Army Radio reported Wednesday overnight. "This is a very serious incident, and that is how we will address it," said Tel Aviv Police chief Cmdr. Ilan Franco, before the gag order was imposed. "We can't say a word about the identity of the deceased because we don't want to speculate." Following the explosion, the SUV slammed into a second car. Dozens of passersby fled the scene, thinking there had been a terrorist attack. A series of wars between crime organizations has left several people dead in recent years. The last car bomb to be used by gangsters killed two people in Lod in December. In August 2007, a car bomb moderately wounded a man with a criminal record in Acre. A second man was lightly wounded and four people went into shock. In September 2006, another man with a criminal background, said to be a "soldier" from the Abergil crime family, was killed when his car exploded in the heart of Rishon Lezion. The attack wounded 11 bystanders. In one of the worst mafia bombings to date, three passersby were killed in 2003 by an explosion in central Tel Aviv aimed at killing underworld kingpin Ze'ev Rosenstein.