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Katzav Attorneys Ask for More Time

Former president Moshe Katzav's legal team has asked for more time to prepare his appeal citing the legal complexity; organization.
By Gabe Kahn.
First Publish: 1/5/2012, 5:41 PM

Moshe Katsav
Moshe Katsav
Flash 90

Attorneys for former President Moshe Katzav filed a motion on Thursday for a 60-day continuance in submitting a petition for an appeal.

Katzav's hearing before Israel's Supreme Court had been scheduled for January 8.

Legal observers say requests for a continuance in cases of appeal before the Supreme Court usually involve legal questions that warrant further discussion.

Katzav's case raised questions about the vagueness of Israel's rape laws and the standard of evidence for testimony based convictions where affect rather than corroborating witnesses or physical evidence is the decisive factor. The judges in Katzav's case noted his accuser's testimony changed over time.

In addition to citing the complexity of the questions involved in the appeal, Attorney Zion Amir added that the defense team may reorganize itself.

Last week, another member of Katzav's legal team, Attorney Avigdor Feldman, said the former president is not likely to file for an additional hearing. This prompted angry reactions by the Katzav family who may drop Feldman as a result.

Katzav entered prison on 7 December 2011 to begin a seven year sentence for rape and obstruction of justice. Should his appeal fail he is unlikely to receive clemency.

In an interview with the daily Yisrael Hayom, President Shimon Peres said, "I take a hard line on people who hurt women, especially sexually."