Palmer Family Wary of Possible Deal with Killers

Palmer family's supporters show up in force at trial of Asher and Jonathan's killers, fight for their right to attend.

Gil Ronen,

Asher and Yonatan Palmer
Asher and Yonatan Palmer
Courtesy of Palmer family

The Military Court at Machane Ofer north of Jerusalem convened Wednesday for a session in the ongoing trial of the murderers of Asher and Yonatan Palmer, the father and baby son who were targeted in their car on September 23.

MK Michael Ben-Ari (National Union) was also present at the session.

Michael Craig Palmer, father of Asher and grandfather of Yonatan, has enlisted the services of Attorney Adrian Agassi – until recently a judge at the same military court. Agassi asked the court to give him the status of the victims' representative in the trial. He was recruited because the Palmers suspect the Military Prosecution may intend to carry out a plea bargain with some of the murderers. The court did not grant him the desired status and referred him to the prosecution.

A confrontation erupted between the Palmers' supporters and representatives of the military court, when some of the supporters were not allowed into the court. This was supposedly because they had not supplied their identification numbers ahead of time. MK Ben Ari intervened and said that according to law, any member of the public who wishes to attend must be allowed to do so. It was Agassi, however, who succeeded in negotiating a solution with the Prisons Service which will hopefully prevent similar problems in further hearings.

The supporters were allowed in after waiting almost an hour.

MK Ben Ari called the trial "a circus with an end that is known in advance." Ben Ari predicted that the killers will eventually "spend quality time in a sanatorium at taxpayer expense."

Any punishment less than death "causes the murderers to smile and their friends to follow in their footsteps," he said. "Seventy years after the Holocaust, the blood of babies is spilled freely, here in the land of our forefathers."

Video by David Wilder