scales of justice
scales of justiceiStock

A plea deal recently reached in the Jerusalem Magistrate's Court ruled that a 27-year-old Arab who attacked a Jewish minor in the Old City about two and a half years ago by throwing a glass bottle at him and wounding him would pay only NIS 1,500 in compensation.

According to the plea agreement, it was decided to amend the indictment and state that the defendant threw an object, and to omit the fact that the minor suffered a head injury as a result of the attack.

Despite the victim's statement and his objection to the plea deal, the agreement was accepted. The sentence handed down in the Jerusalem Magistrate's Court ruled that the defendant would have to monetary compensation to the complainant, would pay a fine of only NIS 1,500 and would not receive any punishment of actual imprisonment or community service.

In his statement, the minor said that he was still in shock from the incident, and that he avoids traveling to the scene of the incident following the injury and in the area in general. In the statement he described that while he was injured from the glass bottle he was bleeding from the head and felt intense pain, and demanded that the accused face imprisonment for the attack.

According to the transcript of the sentence, Judge David Shaul Gabay Richter said "after hearing the parties and the defendant, I am satisfied that the arrangement is appropriate given the circumstances of the act and given the circumstances of the defendant, and therefore I will respect it."

Attorney Haim Bleicher of the Honenu legal organization, who represented the victim, questioned the judge's decision. "Why was the defendant not charged with a racist incident? It is clear that he threw the bottle at the young man because of his hatred of Jews."

In addition, Bleicher said: “[The victim's family] was astonished to accept the plea agreement that puts the defendant out without a substantial sentence. The prosecution has committed three crimes here. The indictment deleted the bottle and decided that an object had been thrown and did not indicate that the complainant was injured. The defendant was also not charged with a racist motive and ultimately also received no punishment. It is not clear to us why they coddled the accused to such an extent, we think that such conduct harms deterrence and encourages racist crime."