Tempers Flare in Daniel Maoz Murder Trial

Defendant's twin brother pleads with defense team to stop accusing him.

A bitter dispute flared on Monday in Jerusalem District Court between Nir Maoz, whose identical twin Daniel Maoz is on trial for murdering their parents last summer, and his brother's lawyer, whose defense strategy involves positing Nir Maoz as the perpetrator.

"Your actions have consequences," Nir Maoz admonished attorney David Barhom from the witness stand. "I'm not the one who is harassing you in the media - that's your doing."

Daniel Maoz, 29, was arrested in September and charged with the gruesome stabbing deaths of Noah and Nurit Maoz at their Jerusalem home in mid-August 14.

The drama in court peaked on Monday when Barhom questioned Nir about his initial police deposition, when he said that on the morning of the murder he noticed that two large knives were missing from his parents' kitchen.

"Is what caused you to look for a chef's knife, the fact that your father's throat was slit?" asked Barhom. Nir Maoz replied: "No. I recalled that what was there was a chef's knife."

Barhom pressed on, asking: "Why is it important to you to mention that Dani [Daniel Maoz, the suspect] said that your father's throat was slit? You didn't know what happened to their throats?"

At that point Nir Maoz addressed Barhom, saying, "I hope the day will come that you enter your house and see what I saw."

Judge Zvi Segal interrupted, saying, "That is inappropriate, to say the least." He asked Nir to apologize to Barhom.

Tamar Maoz, 35, the twins' sister, then shouted at Barhom and Daniel: "You are nobodies."

Barhom complained to the judge, saying "Ms. Tamar is gesturing at me and the defendant and saying we are worthless. I cannot continue this way."

Nir Maoz rejoined, telling Barhom: "You said you would find my bloody fingerprints at the house. Do you have any idea what you are doing to me and my family?"

The vituperative exchange between Nir Maoz and his brother's lawyer was not the first since the trial began a few weeks ago. Two weeks ago Nir Maoz told Barhom, "They murdered my parents: Aren't you embarrassed. What you've done to me, and the way you've done it, are unforgivable."

Tamar Maoz also took the stand on Monday, for the third time. Also questioned as witnesses Monday were computer technicians who had examined Daniel Maoz's personal computer, which according to prosecutors contained code words linking the defendant to the murders.