Drama continues in closing arguments in Maoz trial

Trial of Daniel Maoz, lawyer accused of murdering his parents in August 2011, continued in Jerusalem, as state presented his closing arguments

Daniel Maoz takes witness stand 370 (photo credit: MELANIE LIDMAN)
Daniel Maoz takes witness stand 370
(photo credit: MELANIE LIDMAN)
The trial of Daniel Maoz, a 28-yearold lawyer accused of murdering his parents in August 2011, continued on Sunday in the Jerusalem District Court as the state prosecutor presented his closing arguments.
The drama that has engulfed the trial from the beginning did not abate even as the trial wound to a close, with the judges banishing Maoz from the courtroom twice after he verbally denounced the prosecutors’ arguments.
“Poor guy? Our parents are the poor ones, you good for nothing, he’s the murderer, give the murderer a hug!” Daniel Maoz yelled at his identical twin brother, Nir, as he was led out of the courtroom the first time.
The second time he was led from the courtroom he paused at the door and said “Nir, tell the truth.” In both instances the judges allowed him to return, despite the fact that chief Judge Tzvi Segal warned Maoz not to disrupt the court.
Maoz claimed that Nir stabbed their parents, Noah and Nurit Maoz, to death in their Ramot home last summer while he was “frozen in fear” in the bathroom. The brothers share identical DNA, which was found at the scene.
State prosecutor Yuval Kaplinsky focused on Maoz’s psychological state and the fact that he displayed close to schizophrenic tendencies in insisting that Nir was the murderer when so much evidence pointed in his direction.
“I want to tell you that Daniel Maoz opened the door, went to the bathroom, and someone came in and killed his parents. I don’t want to tell you that someone stabbed their parents to death,” Kaplinsky told the court. “But this indictment was written without choice.”
He called Maoz’s testimony about the events of August 11 “ridiculous and embarrassing.”
Kaplinsky said that the court should rule that Maoz serve two life sentences, for the murder of both parents.
Outside the courtroom, Maoz’s lawyer, David Barhoom, said the prosecution was concentrating too heavily on Maoz’s changing version of events.
During the course of the police investigation, Maoz initially claimed he was not in Jerusalem on the night of the murders, then claimed he was in the house but couldn’t identify the murderers, and then said that the murderer was his twin brother, Nir.
Barhoom noted that in a criminal case the prosecution needed to prove more than just the fact that the suspect’s behavior was “suspicious.” He said the court needed to place more weight on expert opinions, who testified that there could have been two murderers based on the violence found on the bodies. “This case isn’t over yet,” he said.
Barhoom will also present his closing arguments before the judges deliver their verdict.