Lawsuit against the police: 'Blows to the stomach'

Four youths sue police for brutality and false arrests when demonstrating before OC Central Command. Police: Details inaccurate.

Mordechai Sones ,

Police truncheon
Police truncheon

Four youths, two of them minors, filed a NIS 120,000 lawsuit against the Israel Police after having been arrested on their way to a demonstration in front of the home of GOC Central Command Roni Numa in Ramat Gan.

The youths arrived to protest following administrative restraining orders issued by the general. The administrative order imposes harsh restrictions on personal liberty such as house arrest, restrictions on freedom of movement, and association. The reasons and evidence on which issuance of the orders were based are solely classified materials.

In the orders the boys received they were forbidden, among other things, to stay in Judea and Samaria. The reasons for which the youths are suing the State are detainments and body searches on the street without justified grounds, false arrests that included prolonged stays in a small cell or a bench for the night while hand- and legcuffed, and strip searches without consent. The four were released in the two days following the arrest.

In addition, the youths claim that the police acted violently against them, including beatings of one of the boys while he was handcuffed at the police station, lack of food and drink, and forced conversations with the GSS.

The prosecution said that "all the arrests have thus achieved their main (illegal and unfair) objective to prevent the plaintiffs from expressing their fair protest at the general's house, and in doing so a series of false arrests were committed which have received appropriate response from the courts, and many subsidiary injustices, some of which amount to abuse and unreasonable harm to human dignity, especially to minors."

Each of the plaintiffs demanded compensation in the amount of NIS 30,000 for offenses mentioned in the claim, with the total amount of the claim being NIS 120 thousand plus attorney's fees.

"The State of Israel should not act as a banana republic, where someone who demonstrates in front of a senior military commander's house will be arrested, especially if there is no legal basis for arresting him," said Menashe Yado, a lawyer representing the plaintiffs in the case. "That is what happened here, and as a result, many injustices were committed against the minors, while the law was being trampled in a cynical exploitation of police powers."

The police responded: "The complaint has not yet been submitted to the police. When we receive it, we will study it and respond to it through the State Attorney's Office as usual. At the same time, we note that the details appearing in your letter do not present the full and accurate picture of the course of this event."