Yosef Afuta must compensate family of Anat Elimelech

Brother of actress’s killer ordered to pay for tampering with crime scene; man cleaned gun of fingerprints, put it in woman's hand.

Anat Elimelech 311 (photo credit: Courtesy)
Anat Elimelech 311
(photo credit: Courtesy)
The Jerusalem Family Court on Thursday made public a ruling issued last week that Yosef Afuta compensate the family of murdered actress Anat Elimelech after the court found he had tampered with the crime scene.
In March, 13 years after their deaths shocked the country, the court determined that David Afuta, Yosef Afuta’s brother, had shot his girlfriend, Elimelech, a popular actress and fashion model, in his Jerusalem apartment in December 1997 before turning the gun on himself.
In that ruling, Judge Menachem Hacohen decided that Yosef Afuta had tampered with the crime scene to make police believe that Elimelech had murdered David Afuta before committing suicide.
Afuta’s brothers, Yosef and Shmuel, were the first to arrive at the crime scene, and it was alleged that one or both had moved the gun from next to Afuta’s hand to Elimelech’s hand after wiping it clean of fingerprints. However, a police investigation into the alleged tampering was closed in 1999, even though police claimed to have evidence against the brothers.
The case was reexamined after Elimelech’s family sued the Afuta estate for NIS 9.25 million in compensation, including NIS 3m. for damages to Elimelech’s good name and the pain the family suffered after it was alleged that Elimelech had committed a murder-suicide.
In this most recent judgement, Hacohen ruled that Yosef Afuta should pay the Elimelech family a total of NIS 300,000 in compensation. NIS 200,000 of that total was awarded for the harm done to Elimelech’s reputation, and the remaining NIS 100,000 for the pain the family suffered as a result of Elimelech’s initial burial in a plot reserved for suicides and her later reburial in a different plot.
Ron Friedman contributed to this report.