Supreme Court refuses Katsav appeal extension

Former president asked for a third extension after hiring new defense lawyer.

Israeli Supreme Court 311 (photo credit: REUTERS/FILE)
Israeli Supreme Court 311
(photo credit: REUTERS/FILE)
The Supreme Court on Monday rejected a third request by former president Moshe Katsav’s legal team to extend the deadline to file an application for an additional appeal hearing.
The decision came after Supreme Court registrar Guy Shani agreed last week to allow the former president until January 29 to formally request a hearing before an expanded panel of justices.
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However, after Shani acceded to that request, Katsav made another application for an additional extension, saying he needed more time because he had hired a new lawyer, attorney Yoram Sheftel.
However, the registrar said Sheftel’s hiring did not constitute a “substantial change of circumstances,” and therefore he could not accept Katsav’s request.
Shani criticized the former president’s legal team for failing to provide any explanation of how they used the previous extensions granted by the court, and for failing to explain why Sheftel was appointed so close to the court’s deadline.
The former president is serving a seven-year prison sentence after being unanimously convicted in the Tel Aviv District Court in 2010 of two counts of rape, two counts of sexual harassment, an indecent act using force, and obstruction of justice.
In November, the Supreme Court rejected Katsav’s appeal against that conviction and sentence.