Police could be backing away from case against protest leader Leef

The police may finally be backing off their case against social justice movement leader Daphni Leef, according to several indications on Sunday.

Daphni Leef, January 26, 2014 (photo credit: YONAH JEREMY BOB)
Daphni Leef, January 26, 2014
(photo credit: YONAH JEREMY BOB)
The police announced late Sunday that they were reviewing cases relating to the social justice movement protests (which all observers note as a euphemism for the Leef case, and others) and, therefore, were delaying the Leef case’s planned hearing for Monday.
Subsequently, the court spokesman issued an official postponement of the trial and in a nearly unprecedented fashion, provided no adjournment date.
Early Saturday night, the Justice Ministry abruptly canceled a planned Sunday press briefing with Attorney- General Yehuda Weinstein of the case.
The Justice Ministry spokesman said the meeting was postponed at the direct request of Police Insp.-Gen. Yohanan Danino.
There was speculation that Weinstein would criticize the police for pursuing the case as he and the prosecution declined to indict Leef and opposed the police moving forward with the case.
Ultimately, the police started the case last week using its own independent counsel and the start of the trial was widely perceived as a further embarrassment for the police.
Taken together, many predict that these recent events show the police is reconsidering the public relations damage that the Leef case may cause it.
Police accused Leef of “using force” and resisting arrest, and she has countered that police improperly roughed her up at a June 2012 protest.
Leef said before the opening of her trial that the police were trying to oppress her and other’s free speech, but that she would not back down and hoped “cooler thinking” prevailed over “thuggery.”
The case is plagued by many legal issues, as it is based on a police officer’s word that he saw Leef push another officer, who did not himself report being pushed.