The sentences handed down – 21 years and life imprisonment – reflect the severity of the offenses committed by the minors: the murder of an innocent boy their own age, whose life was brutally taken.

Conviction of two minors in the Muhammad Abu-Khdeir murder case

 

(Communicated by the Spokesperson of the Ministry of Justice)

On Thursday (4 February 2016) the Jerusalem District Court sentenced two minors accused in the Abu Khdeir case – one minor was sentenced to life imprisonment, and the other was sentenced to 21 years imprisonment.

This sentence reflects the severity of the offenses committed by the minors – the murder of an innocent boy their own age, whose life was brutally taken. The horrific murder was carried out for ideological reasons. Abu Khdeir was killed only because he was Arab. The case shows the extreme effects of incitement in the public sphere – poisoning the mind and driving young people to hate crimes and acts of revenge towards innocent people.

The District Attorney regarded the defendants as partners in the criminal offenses and therefore sought the maximum penalty – life imprisonment – despite the fact that they are minors. The court has not yet ruled in the case of the adult defendant, but if convicted, the District Attorney will seek a severe punishment in his case as well.

The verdict given today shows that the court agreed with the prosecution, that the appropriate sentence regarding ideological crimes is life imprisonment, and that key consideration in sentencing is the deterrent effect, regardless of whether it is Jewish or Arabic terrorism. The terrible tragedy that befell the family of the boy Mohammad Abu Khdeir cannot be reversed, but the verdict given today conveys a message to society’s aversion to such acts and to deter others from committing such acts. Jerusalem District Attorney’s Office has been in constant contact with members of the Abu Khdeir family from the beginning of proceedings and kept them informed throughout the trial.