Suspect in Israel’s most infamous murder case released on house arrest while awaiting retrial

The victim’s mother, Ilana Rada, recently told Israeli media that she does not believe Zadorov murdered her daughter.

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that a Ukrainian national who spent more than a decade behind bars after being convicted of the grisly slaying of a 13-year-old Israeli girl must be released on house arrest while awaiting a new trial.

Roman Zadorov was found guilty in 2010 of stabbing Tair Rada to death in the girls’ restroom of a high school in the Golan Heights municipality of Katzrin, where he worked as a custodian at the time.

Zadorov’s wife has fought a long-running media crusade for years, insisting that her husband was railroaded by the police and the prosecution.

Zadorov initially confessed to the murder but later recanted, saying he had done so under intense pressure from investigators.

In May 2021, the Supreme Court ordered a retrial in light of evidence presented by Zadorov’s attorneys that could potentially exonerate him.

His original conviction was overturned and the state prosecution is gearing up to try Zadorov once again.

The state prosecution protested that Zadorov is too much of a risk to remain at home on house arrest before and during the trial, but the Supreme Court found otherwise.

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Citing the fact that Zadorov will be fitted with an electronic monitoring bracelet, the Court said he is not a potential flight risk.

Justice Alex Stein pointed to Zadorov’s good behavior while incarcerated as proof that he would not be a danger to the community.

“A lack of violence by [Zadorov] during his many years in prison and his proper conduct as a worker in the prison welding workshop also carry weight,” Stein wrote.

The victim’s mother, Ilana Rada, recently told Israeli media that she does not believe Zadorov murdered her daughter.

Rada said she believed one of the girl’s classmates had killed her and that the police had not properly investigated that possibility.

During a hearing to determine whether Zadorov should be retried, “there was one girl who said, ‘I know who killed Tair,’” Rada told Ynet.

“The judge asked [the police], ‘How did you continue the investigation?’ and they replied, ‘We talked to her but she said she was not prepared to testify.’”