Murderer on prison furlough escapes into Syria

2 men arrested for abetting Muhammed Yassin's escape across border; was serving 20-year sentence for stabbing man to death.

Syria-Israel border 370 (photo credit: Nir Elias/Reuters)
Syria-Israel border 370
(photo credit: Nir Elias/Reuters)
A convicted murderer slipped across the northern border into strife-torn Syria last night while on a prison furlough, police reported Tuesday morning.
Muhammed Yassin, 23, was serving a 20-year-sentence at Hermon Prison in the north for the 2006 murder of Duhadi Arsawan, whom he stabbed to death during an argument at a gas station near the village of Tamra.
On Monday Yassin left prison on his third furlough, meant to be 12 hours spent with his family. Some hours later relatives arrived at the prison and told authorities they did not know where Yassin was and that they feared he might try to escape.
Not long after that, IDF troops noticed a group of men on the border and sent soldiers to cordon off the area. They also called the police border security unit, which sent a team to the area.
At around 10 p.m. police announced that, along with IDF troops, they had arrested two men on the Syrian border in the northern Golan Heights whom they believed were drug smugglers.
Shortly afterward, according to police, the two suspects, aged 19 and 21, told them they had helped two men – one a convicted murderer – flee across the border. One of the suspects turned out to be Yassin’s brother, Hattib.
On Tuesday morning the suspects were brought before the Nazareth Magistrate’s Court, where their remand was extended by five days.