The Israeli Central Court in Jerusalem sentenced an Israeli soldier to six and a half years imprisonment although he was convicted of killing a Palestinian youth after pushing him off a speeding military jeep in Hebron, the Arabs48 news website reported. The incident took place six years ago when Israeli border-guard policemen kidnapped several residents from the southern West Bank city of Hebron, including Amran Abu Hamdiyya, 17. As the military jeep was moving, one of the soldiers identified as Yania Lalza, pushed Abu Hamdiyya off the moving vehicle, the Arabs48 added.
The officer, Yanai Lalza, was also convicted of robbery, destroying evidence and obstructing justice.
Israeli online daily, Haaretz, reported that the soldier and his fellow soldiers abducted several Palestinian residents of Hebron and beat them with truncheons and rifles.
Under a plea bargain, the soldier confessed, among other things, that he and another soldier identified as Shahar Botbeka, had beaten Abu Hamdiyya and then opened the back door of the moving jeep before Lalza pushed him out.
Haaretz added that the soldier shouted “he is dead, he is dead”, but the soldiers continued driving and did not attempt to help the youth.
The soldiers later covered their crime, falsified documents and coordinated their stories, Haaretz reported.
The Israeli Investigations Department sent an undercover agent who infiltrated the four suspected soldiers to gather information on the attack.
The investigation revealed that Lalza and other soldiers “celebrated their first day of service Hebron non December 30, 2002, by launching an abuse campaign in the city”, Haaretz added.
The soldiers first kidnapped a Palestinian youth indentified as Ala’ Sonokrot, and took him to an isolated location where they forced him to stand facing a wall.
One of the soldiers identified as Botbeka, struck the youth with a pickax handle while Lalza was beating and kicking the youth.
Haaretz also stated that a third soldier identified as, Denis Alhasoz, photographed the abuse while another soldier, identified as Bassam Wahabe, who was driving the jeep, stood and watched.
The youth suffered a broken skull and was let off the jeep later on without receiving any medical attention by the soldiers.
Another abuse incident was carried out by the same soldiers against Hamza rajabi, 22, when the soldiers beat him and stole 150 NIS from him before letting him go.
Also in Hebron and on the same day, the soldiers abducted a Palestinian man and ordered him to jump off the moving military jeep. The man managed to jump and left the scene limping.
Later on the same say, they kidnapped Abu Hamdiyya and ordered him to jump off the moving jeep. He tried to hold on the top of the jeep and tried to prevent the soldiers from pushing him out.
Haaretz said that Jerusalem Court District judge, Orit Efaal-Gabay, wrote in her verdict that the Botbeka use forced and released the deceased youth’s grasp on the jeeps’ strap and shoved him out of it which was driving at 80 kilometers, nearly 50 miles, per hour.
The judge added that the youth’s head struck against the ground and the soldier, Lalza, saw the youth fighting for his life but did not “lift a finger to help him and prevent the fatal result”, Haaretz said.
The soldier also photographed the incident. The investigation by the undercover agent resulted in disbanding the unit.
Haaretz also reported that Israel decided to compensate the family an amount of 450.000 NIS which would be collected from Lalza.
Moreover, Haaretz also said that the driver of the jeep was convicted, among other things, of “being accessory to man slaughter” on a separate trial, and was sentenced to four and a half years in prison.
The mother of the slain youth said that the prison sentence against Lalza was light, and added that her son was the sole breadwinner of the family.