Court cancels murderer's early release

Ahmad Mahmoud Avler, a Palestinian man in jail for strangling Hagai Shalhevet to death, has early release plea rejected.

High Court of Justice 370 (photo credit: yonah jeremy bob)
High Court of Justice 370
(photo credit: yonah jeremy bob)
The Beersheba Administrative Court announced Sunday that Ahmad Mahmoud Avler, a Palestinian convicted in 1994 for murdering Hagai Shalhevet would remain in prison until 2023 following a ruling that rejected the parole board’s decision to release him immediately.
He had been sentenced to life in prison in 1994 for killing Shalhevet by tying him up and strangling him.
However, on July 18, 2012, the parole board reviewed Avler’s case for the possibility of an early release.
The state opposed an early release due to the gravity of Avler’s actions, the inability to supervise him upon release, the inability to prevent him from returning to crime and the opposition of victim’s family.
Yet the parole board appeared to accept the position of Avler’s lawyer, who insisted that his client had undergone rehabilitation while in jail. This, together with Avler’s expression of regret for his deeds and the presentation of the Al-Amal Center’s program for preserving his rehabilitated status after his release, almost convinced the board. Nevertheless, requesting further clarification from the rehabilitation center regarding its program, the parole board postponed its final decision to a later hearing.
On March 18, however, having received additional clarification, the board ordered Avler’s release, after serving 20 years of his sentence.
The state appealed the early release decision, arguing that the parole board had failed to fully weigh the gravity of the circumstances of the murder, failed to properly judge how dangerous Avler was and had ignored the already reduced sentence which he had been granted.
Prior to the parole process, his sentence had been commuted by presidential order and was set to end in 2023.
Last Wednesday, the Beersheba Administrative Court accepted the Southern District Attorney’s Office’s appeal of the parole board’s decision and reinstated Avler’s prison sentence at least through 2023, which decision was announced on Sunday.