A young man from Bet El has been in jail for three weeks because despite being released to house arrest because the judge ordered him to wear electronic handcuffs, and these were not allowed in Judea and Samaria until 15 days ago, when a new law took force.
The new director of the electronic monitoring program announced on Wednesday that electronic cuffing may be carried out in the community of Bet El, in the Binyamin region. “The law that went into force on June 16, 2015, does not differentiate between territories in the state of Israel,” he wrote the court. “In other words, there is nothing that prevents performing electronic monitoring in Bet El.”
The company that carried out electronic cuffing until recently refused to operate in Judea and Samaria.
However, a protracted legal struggle was waged by the Honenu group, which assists Jews who are charged with nationalist crimes. In addition, ex-MK Orit Struk (Jewish Home) demanded that the new law regulating electronic handcuffs include Judea and Samaria. The struggle appears to have succeeded.
Judge Mordechai Kaduri has thus far ordered the youth to remain in custody. On Wednesday it was decided that his home will inspected within five days's time, and if it is found that it is suitable for cuffing, he silll be released.
Attorney Adi Kedar (Honenu) said in response that the legal aid group is pleased with the announcement and expects the youth to be released to house arrest.
The Head of the Bet El Local Council, Shay Alon, said that he is “glad that the state of Israel woke up and understood that Bet El is part of the country.”
A court set a precedent Sunday by sending a youth to house arrest at his home in Samaria.
Until now, when residents of Judea and Samaria accused of building illegal outposts were sentenced to house arrest, the courts insisted the arrest be carried out in a home inside the 1948 armistice lines, instead of at the offender's own home. The reason for this is not clear, but activists believe it is an attempt to cut off communication with other members of the activist community who may live nearby.
The Honenu organization is demanding that the courts put a stop to this practice.
Attorneys for Honenu charged in court Sunday that the practice was discriminatory. The issue arose during the trial of a young man who allegedly attempted to interfere with the demolition of homes by letting the air out of the tires of a tractor that was to be used for the job. He is also suspected of attacking a Border Guard officer.