Suspects in Deadly Tel Aviv Hit-and-run Seek France Trial

French nationals fled Israel after hitting Li Zeituni with their car, deserting her in the street; suspects' attorney: There's a 'power struggle' between French, Israeli authorities

Claude Isaac and Eric Roubi, the two French nationals accused of killing 25 year old Li Zeituni in a hit and run case in Tel Aviv two months ago, do not plan to return to Israel to face justice, but rather are determined to remain in France, their lawyers were quoted as telling a French press agency Tuesday.

"This is what my client wants. We want to stand trial here," one of their lawyers said.
Another lawyer added that it was possible the Israeli authorities, who have demanded that the two suspects to be brought to Israel, would allow the trial to take place in France after all, but admitted there was still a "power struggle" between the French and Israeli authorities at the moment.

Lee Zeitouni

Late last month, activists in a group working to bring back Isaac and Roubi to Israel from France handed out flyers bearing the slogan "license to kill" at Ben-Gurion International Airport to passengers arriving from France.

The members of the group hope to appeal to the French passengers, most of whom are Jewish, to assist in extraditing the two men from France, which, as they put it, is "sheltering the murderers of a Jewish woman."

One passenger on an incoming flight, Alain Guyader the assistant to the mayor of Villebon-Sur-Yvette a city near Paris said: "I hadn't heard about this but they should keep trying," he said, referring to the activists. Guyader said he would pass on the pamphlet to politician Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, who he said was "number 3 in the parliament." Kosciusko Morizet is the minister of ecology.

Another passenger, Jacques Braun said: "I think they should not be allowed to remain free. The government of Israel must keep asking France to extradite them and if France refuses, it will be a great scandal.

Roi Peled,who had been Zeituni's partner, said it was important to him to raise the awareness of French Jews in the hope that they would help exert pressure on France.

On December 8, the group plans to hold a rally at the intersection where Zeituni was run over.