Four men from the central Israeli city of Lod were charged Thursday with offenses related to a July abduction of a 7-year-old boy, who was returned safely to his family after four days.
The suspects were charged with offenses including kidnapping for purposes of extortion, conspiracy and obstruction of justice. Prosecutors say Ahmed Nakib, 41, a building contractor, planned the abduction of Karim Jamhour in order to recover a debt he believed the boy’s father and uncle owed him. The actual kidnapping, according to the indictment, was carried out by Mohand al-Musraty, 24; Musa Aliwa, 28 and Ahmed Aliwa, 30.
Prosecutors say one of the kidnappers rented a Toyota Avensis on July 3. On the day of the kidnapping, he and his co-conspirators met at Airport City — close to Lod and Ben-Gurion International Airport — where they stole the license plates of a parked vehicle and replaced those of the rental car in a bid to evade detection.
They then drove to the home of the Jamhours in Kalansua. Karim and a 10-year-old cousin were outside the house. After luring the boys to the car on the pretext of giving them money, one of the suspects, his face concealed, jumped out of the car and pushed Karim inside. The suspect tried to grab Karim’s cousin as well, but he escaped.
According to the charge sheet, one of the kidnappers told Karim he would “slaughter him” if he didn’t keep quiet.
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That evening Naqib coordinated the boy’s return with his cousin in Ramallah, the charge sheet says. It adds that Karim was held in Palestinian Authority territory for an unspecified amount of time between July 10 and 13. Karim was brought back to Israel on July 13 with the mediation of an Israeli Arab reconciliation committee and handed to police, the charges say.