Ofer - Membership/activity in unauthorized association, Plea Bargain

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Vivi Sury, Nitza Aminov (reporting)

Translation: Marganit W.


What’s behind the title “Hebron Hamas Women’s Council” – a civil organization dealing with visiting prisoners’ families, education, etc. without any recourse to violence!?


Judge: Major Kamel Zaharaldin

Defendant: Safaa Akram Shehada Abu Sneina Abu-Hussein

Defense: Atty. Ismail Tawil


A plea bargain was reached:


After all the fuss, only one clause remained in the indictment: holding a position in an unlawful organization.

Penalty: 14 months prison time starting with the day of arrest, 9000 shekel fine [The attorneys say that quite often when bargaining with the prosecution, the family is prepared to pay a higher fine in exchange for reduced prison time]. 12 month of probation for 5 years, in case of committing the same violation, and a 12-month probation for 3 years to ensure she does not attend meetings or keeps any property of the unlawful organization.


Safaa Abu Sneina was first accused of being in charge of receiving Hamas funds, but the prosecution had difficulty proving the amount received by the Women’s Council.


Note the last clause of the indictment: we are not sure how to interpret it. Perhaps attending a wedding or a condolence visit can be construed as contact with Hamas. Safaa Abu Sneina may be holed up in her house and avoid all social contact. We hope that this is not the case.


Safaa’s husband and her brother attended the hearing. In an unusual move, the judge allowed her sister to attend the hearing too. She had not seen Safaa since her arrest.

Unlike the earlier hearing which dealt extensively with Safaa’s medical condition and her mistreatment in jail, this time, due to her imminent release, Safaa looked happy and talked at length with her family. Her husband was not so worried about her health and said that she would receive proper treatment at home. The family surmised that the day of release would be 21.7.19.