Dror Aryeh's Paraglider
Dror Aryeh's Paraglider Yehuda Hanimov

Rabbi Dror Aryeh filed a false arrest complaint with the Department of Internal Police Investigations (Mahash), but the department closed it and the appeal remains unanswered.

A letter by attorney Moshe Polski to the state prosecutor's appeals department describes how the incident occurred over a year ago during the Tel Aviv LGBT pride parade. The rabbi hired a professional paraglider to fly over the parade with a sign saying "Father + Mother = Family". In response, Aryeh was brought in for questioning and was held in custody for several hours.

Despite the official complaint about the alleged unlawful arrest which was submitted to Mahash and the attorney general, it would appear that Mahash did not open an investigation as per its legal duty. Likewise, Mahash did not investigate the police's conduct during his arrest, although they allegedly violated his democratic rights, including his liberty, freedom of movement, and freedom of speech. In addition, the department did not investigate the police code classified felonies that were committed by the police during his arrest. In response Aryeh submitted an appeal to Mahash, but, as mentioned, the appeals department has yet to tend to the appeal.

Polski states in his letter that the delay in coming to a conclusion is disrupting the investigation, "It is clear that the more time passes, the harder it will be to obtain the relevant materials and to investigate the suspects, and the delay denies Rabbi Aryeh his right to an effective and speedy investigation into his complaint."

Not coming to a conclusion on the matter also prevents Aryeh from contacting a legal team. "This is not acceptable, a complaint about the scandalous behavior of the Israeli Police Force was submitted, and is not receiving any attention, not from the Department of Internal Police Investigations and not even from the attorney general's appeals department," the letter continues.

"This conduct is infuriating," Polski said in a statement. "A citizen was detained, but he was actually arrested, on a Friday, without having done anything wrong, just because he wanted to protest the pride parade that took place on Tel Aviv beach. He did it in the most legitimate and legal manner, the same way commercial ads are usually advertised, and suddenly the police follow him, arrest him, search his car, detain him and deny his freedom of speech, and release him right before the onset of the Shabbat. All this was wrongful, only because he had the nerve to protest the pride parade.

If that's not enough, even after we submitted a complaint to Mahash, nothing was done, they didn't even open an investigation. We received the investigation material from Mahash after they closed the case, and we see they didn't even contact the police officers to receive a response. We submitted an appeal to the state prosecutor four or five months ago and nothing has happened yet. How can we trust that Mahash and the state prosecutor will investigate the truth if they haven't done anything for such a long time since receiving the complaint? After that, they'll say that they can't investigate because they can't find the officers that were involved."

Rabbi Dror Aryeh also commented on the fact that Mahash and the state prosecutor have yet to open an investigation in the case: "Mahash is again covering up a brutal arrest that disregarded a citizen's legal right to protest the harming of the normal family."