State indicts man for driving bus bomber from W. Bank border to Bat Yam

Abu Anza, 24, and an Israeli citizen, drove the car that brought al-Harimi to Bat Yam bus 240 on December 22, 2013.

Bat Yam bus bombing 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Nir Elias)
Bat Yam bus bombing 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Nir Elias)
The Tel Aviv District Attorney’s office filed an indictment with the Tel Aviv Magistrate’s Court on Monday against Mahmoud Abu Anza for allegedly illegally ferrying from the West Bank border to Bat Yam the December bus bomber, Sami al-Harimi.
Abu Anza, 24, and an Israeli citizen of Tel Sheva, drove the car that brought al-Harimi to Bat Yam bus 240 on December 22, 2013.
Besides being charged for transporting around illegal border crossers under aggravated circumstances, Abu Anza was also charged with conspiracy to commit a misdemeanor, driving without a driver’s license, driving without car insurance and disrupting police from their duty.
On Thursday, the court spokesman cleared for publication details of the Shin Bet’s (Israel Security Agency) arrests of 14 members of an Islamic Jihad terrorist group from Bethlehem who were suspected of involvement with the bomb attack.
The passengers of the bus narrowly escaped the bombing when an alert passenger informed the driver of a suspected package on the bus.
The driver evacuated the bus while another passenger looking inside the bag found what he said looked like a pressure cooker with a red wire coming out of it.
According to the Shin Bet, during their interrogations, the detainees admitted that in recent months the group decided to carry out a mass killing in Israel.
The four central suspects arrested are al-Harimi, 20, Yosef Salamah, 22, Sahaha Tamari, 24, his brother Hamadi Tamari, 21.
The bomb was created by the Tamari brothers and Salamah, said court documents. They used at least 1.25 kg of improvised explosives, nails and screws and attached it to a cellular operating system for remote operation, according to court documents.
The bomb was delivered to al-Harimi, hidden inside in a black handbag, who traveled to the southern Hebron hills and illegally crossed over the border to Israel, court documents alleged.
The indictment said that al-Harimi then got into Abu Anza’s car and was driven, along with other men that had crossed with him, to Jaffa around 12:40. Al-Harimi got on the Dan bus line 240, put the bomb in the center of the bus and got off the bus, alleged the indictment. A few minutes later, around 2:30 p.m., he called the cellular device attached to the bomb to set it off, said the indictment.
During his interrogation al-Harimi, who was arrested in Bethlehem on December 26, stated his intention to commit a larger act of terror in the Tel Aviv area around the same time period, said the Shin Bet.
The prosecution has asked for al-Harimi to be remanded to police custody until the end of the proceedings against him, with the next hearing on the issue to be held on January 16.
The date for al-Harimi’s arraignment is still yet to be set.
The other defendants’ cases are being handled on an ongoing basis by the Shin Bet and the IDF West Bank Prosecution and indictments may not be forthcoming for several weeks or longer.
Jerusalem Post staff contributed to this report.