Court Releases Suspected Jewish Terrorist to House Arrest

Chaim Pearlman was arrested last month for allegedly murdering 4 Palestinians, wounding several more; released due to lack of evidence.

A Petah Tikva court on Wednesday released suspected Jewish terrorist Chaim Pearlman to house arrest due to lack of substantial evidence against him.

Suspected murderer Chaim Pearlman in a Petah Tikva court in July.
Nir Keidar

Pearlman, a right-wing activist, was arrested more than a month ago for allegedly murdering four Palestinians and wounding several more in attacks that had seemingly nationalist motives.

On Monday, the court refused a request from the Shin Bet security service to extend Pearlman's remand by eight days.

In extending Pearlman's remand for only two more days, Judge Nachum Sternlicht said: "I haven't seen any substantial evidence that could serve to convict Pearlman." According the Shin Bet, despite his release to house arrest he continued to be the main suspect in the case.

During the hearing, it was revealed that one of the people who had been questioned in recent months told interrogators that he had been an associate of Pearlman's in criminal acts against Arabs, but that the statute of limitations had expired on these alleged acts.

The person said he had no information about the murders that Pearlman is suspected of committing.

Pearlman's attorney, Adi Keidar, told the court the hearing was "unusual" because the team investigating Pearlman "gets what it asks for all the time, and again they come with various excuses saying they need these days," referring to the request for an eight-day remand.

Keidar accused the investigators of trying to force a confession out of Pearlman.

Pearlman's associates said there has been no progress in the investigation since he was arrested and that "the Shin Bet insists on holding him for no reason."