In its conviction, the court stated that it believed husband Amiram’s confession, even if he had been tortured prior to giving the police his statement.
By Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News
Orian Ben Uliel, wife of the man who was convicted Monday of killing several members of an Arab family in a firebombing in 2015, protested her husband’s innocence in an interview with the religious Srugim website Tuesday.
“He did not do it,” Orian said.
“My husband was with me in the house that whole night… We also brought witnesses [but] the court simply ignored it. The police also ignored it at the time. They refused to interrogate me even though our lawyer requested it, since we had no way of coordinating [the testimonies], we didn’t see him, he was isolated and couldn’t meet a lawyer.”
Orian dismissed the fact that Amiram had confessed to the crime, because of the torture he had undergone while in custody of the Shin Bet security agency.
“He underwent hundreds of hours of interrogation, for 17 days they didn’t let him sleep, they just questioned him,” she explained.
“He experienced inhuman torture. They tied him with his head down and back twisted, with his hands and legs handcuffed beneath his chair, while beating him fiercely over a seven-hour period, until he could no longer stand it… and confessed.
“They threatened that the second he refused to cooperate, he’d be taken back to the torture chamber. He couldn’t stand this hell, he was helpless, he couldn’t even speak to a lawyer. To this day he has nightmares,” Orian said.
Part of Ben Uliel’s confession regarding the attack on the Dawabshe family home in the village of Duma was thrown out in 2018.
The judges decided he had spoken during or immediately after suffering the extreme methods used by the “Jewish Department” of Israel’s security service. In their decision, however, they said that statements he made days after undergoing “enhanced interrogation” could be used against him.
Ben Uliel’s lawyers contended that those statements should be dismissed as well, because his ongoing fear of being tortured again led him to falsely admit culpability.
Ben Uliel had run-ins with the authorities before, while living in Shiloh. He was convicted of violating an administrative order barring him from the region and of scuffling with security forces when they came to forcefully evacuate Jewish residents from an outpost.
Orian says that they’ll appeal the conviction to the Supreme Court, though she said she has doubts whether they will find justice there.
“Unfortunately, my confidence in the court really went down,” she said. “I was sure today that he would be acquitted. I was in shock that it’s possible to convict an innocent person. I hope that there, justice will prevail.”
The Lod District Court convicted Amiram on a total of three counts of murder and two counts each of attempted murder and arson. He was acquitted of the charge of membership in a terrorist organization.