Nearly 100% of All Military Court Cases in West Bank End in Conviction, Haaretz Learns

Report shows the military appeals courts decidedly favor the prosecution, with judges accepting 67 percent of prosecution appeals, as opposed to only 33 percent of appeals filed by the defense.

Chaim Levinson
Chaim Levinson
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Chaim Levinson
Chaim Levinson

Virtually all - 99.74 percent, to be exact - of cases heard by the military courts in the territories end in a conviction, according to data in the military courts' annual report, which has been obtained by Haaretz.

The report also shows that the military appeals courts decidedly favor the prosecution, with appeals court judges accepting 67 percent of appeals filed by the prosecution, as opposed to only 33 percent of appeals filed by the defense.

Credit: Limor Edri

The military courts, headed by Col. Aharon Mishnayot, deal with all criminal and security cases involving Palestinians, from their detention through their appeals. Only very exceptional, usually symbolic cases are heard by Israeli courts.

The military court system also includes committees that hear appeals against decisions by Israel Defense Forces commanders, committees that approve administrative detentions, and a committee that approves expulsion orders.

According to the report, 9,542 cases were wrapped up in 2010, of which 2,016 involved hostile terror activity, 763 disorderly conduct and the rest Palestinians staying illegally in Israel, traffic offenses and criminal activity.

The report states that 25 cases ended in full acquittal, meaning that the conviction rate is 99.74 percent. But 4 percent of the cases result in at least partial acquittal on one or more of the charges.

The administrative detention panels, headed by Lt. Col. Shlomi Kokhav, handled 714 requests for administrative detention in 2010, of which 98.77 percent were approved.

Only 51 percent of these requests were honored in full, however. The rest offset days the suspect had already been held, or put certain restrictions on the relevant military commander.

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