Francois Abutbul Charged in Wife's Assault

All three branches of the Netanya restaurant chain Bat Ha'ikar, owned by suspected underworld figure Francois Abutbul, were ordered closed after police received intelligence about plans to attack the eateries. On Monday, a stun grenade was thrown into the main branch, damaging a car and frightening passersby.

Netanya Police Chief Ron Gertner announced that the restaurants were closed as of 2 P.M. yesterday.

Two of the branches complied with the closure order but the main restaurant remained open, serving scores of customers.

Police forcibly shut down the place and detained the branch manager.

Abutbul was charged yesterday with assaulting and threatening his wife.

He allegedly beat her, spat on her, dragged her by the hair and threatened to murder her.

The latter was allegedly done by hand gestures - moving his hand across his throat and mimicking firing a gun - as Abutbul feared his house was under audio surveillance by the police.

His remand was extended by ten days.