Israeli Border Policeman Indicted for Spraying Tear Gas in East Jerusalem Cafe

Officer allegedly threatened bystanders, beat up a man and got commander to lie about incident.

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Border Police officers in East Jerusalem.
Border Police officers in East Jerusalem (illustrative photo). Credit: AFP

A Border Police officer, who allegedly sprayed tear gas at people in an East Jerusalem café and beat up one of them, was charged on Sunday with causing serious injury and suborning a witness.

The Justice Ministry’s department for the investigation of police officers submitted the indictment against Border Police officer Trad Bilel, 28, to the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court on Sunday.

Last November Bilel arrived at a café on Sultan Suleiman Street in East Jerusalem and allegedly sprayed tear gas at bystanders near the entrance and forced them into the café. According to the charge sheet, he then sprayed the interior of the café with tear gas. He is also said to have pointed his gun at some of those present and handcuffed one of them and hit him as he brought him to the patrol car. Bilel allegedly continued to hit and kick him even after they arrived at the police station.

Following the incident an investigation was launched by the Justice Ministry department, which summoned the accused and others involved, to testify. Bilel allegedly threatened the team commander he worked with, demanding that she not tell the truth to investigators. As a result, she provided false information about what took place at the café.

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