Justice Minister Gideon Sa'ar
Justice Minister Gideon Sa'arYonatan Sindel/Flash90

Justice Minister Gideon Sa’ar is fast-tracking the promotion of legislation that will help address the growing serious crime in Arab society.

On Sunday, a memorandum was circulated for public comment to amend the grounds set forth in section 25 of the Criminal Procedure (Detention and Search) Ordinance [New Version] 1969, according to which a police officer is authorized to conduct a search without first obtaining a court order.

As things stand, Section 25 of the Ordinance establishes four grounds for conducting a search without a court order, all of which are characterized by the fact that in their presence, the need to conduct the search is urgent, and applying to the court for a search warrant will frustrate its purpose. The new memorandum proposes to legislate additional grounds for conducting a search without a warrant, including the necessity to seize evidence in connection with serious criminal offenses before the evidence is damaged, hidden, or destroyed.

The proposal is designed to expand the search powers given to police in order to bring about an increase in the amount of weapons and ammunition seized in the short term, and to promote investigation and prosecution in the longer term, to deter offenders from committing offenses.

The proposed amendment is primarily intended to give the police authority to conduct a search without a court order where there exists a reasonable suspicion that there is an object associated with a serious crime in the specified location.

"The Justice Ministry is promoting legislation in various areas that will help fight crime in Arab society,” the Ministry said in a statement. “We propose to take significant steps to help law enforcement officials in their fight against crime, especially given the need to take urgent measures to fight crime in Arab society and strengthen citizens’ sense of security.”