Ofer - Membership/activity in unauthorized association, Plea Bargain

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Vivi Sury, Nitza Aminov (reporting)

Translation: Marganit W.


The Plea Bargain Trap

As we all know, the majority of cases in the military courts end with plea bargains. Quite often the prosecution prepares an indictment with many clauses with the assumption that when it comes to a plea bargain, some of the charges will be dropped.

In court, the revised indictment is read and the accused must plead guilty.


Alaa Saed Kamel Assef  is a student in Beir-Zeit University.

She was arrested at the beginning of May 2016, taken to the Russian Compound for interrogation, was kept in solitary confinement without access to counsel for three weeks, then transferred to Sharon Prison.

Alaa is now released on bail. Today she was in court before Justice Shmuel Keidar.

Her attorney, Fadi Qawasme said a deal has been proposed but Alaa is reluctant to admit guilt and requests more time to decide.

A memorandum hearing was set for 20.11.16.


Professor Imad Bargouthi had a hearing this morning.

Atty. Jawad Boulos reported that the High Court of Justice rejected their request, so he is negotiating with the prosecution regarding a plea bargain.

Remember that Prof. Bargouthi has been in jail for 5 months, accused of incitement via Facebook. When an agreement is reached he will have to plead guilty.

Four activists from Tel Aviv were in court today to show solidarity with Prof. Bargouthi.

The next hearing will take place on 9.10.16.


Historical background:

On 12.3.08, in a planned action, security forces shot four people sitting in a car in Bethlehem. They killed Muhammad Shehadeh (A-taamri), Ahmed Boulboul (whose 2 sons went on a long hunger strike to protest their administrative detention), Issa Marzouk Zawahara and the driver Imad Al-Kamel. They also verified the killing.

On 12.3.08 “Btselem” asked the Attorney General and the Chief Military Attorney to investigate the case. There was no response.

Two weeks ago the army raided the home of the widow Adala Ibrahim A-Taamri and arrested two of her sons.

Today was the remand extension hearing.

Atty. Adnan Odeh represents Adala.


The judge decided on a 3-day extension. Later three more days were added, but in the meantime she was released on bail. Her two sons are still in detention.


Conversations in the Yard:

There have been many raids on the village of Beit-Oummar. They include breaking-ins, the use of gas and stun grenades and much destruction. Several residents of the village have been murdered and many are in jail, including minors.

A man approached us in the yard to tell us that his 15-year old son had been in jail for two weeks, charged with throwing rocks. The attorney told the father that the son pled guilty (of throwing a rock at a jeep without hitting it), that the interrogation was harsh and that in the end he admitted to throwing the rock. The interrogation was only partially documented. The father described how the soldiers attacked with stun grenades that caused their 8-month old babyinfo-icon to asphyxiate. He needed immediate medical attention. The long-suffering father is worried that his son is in jail and misses school.

We later heard that the judge decided to release the boy on a 5000-shekel bond and a promise to stay home - except for going to school. The father has no money to deposit.

On Wednesday I came to Ofer again and saw the father who was waiting for the attorney. I have no idea how this father of ten was able to obtain the bail money. He said he would do anything to bring his son home so he could go back to school.

I hope the boy was released.