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Efrati (R) with police investigator Photo: Dudu Azoulay
Efrati (R) with police investigator Photo: Dudu Azoulay
 
 

IDF guard suspected of attempted rape named

Cleared for publication: Captain Erez Efrati is army chief's bodyguard arrested about two weeks ago on suspicion of assaulting young woman at Tel Aviv Port. Indictment to be filed against him in coming days

Avi Cohen
Published: 12.09.09, 10:12 / Israel News

Captain Erez Efrati is the Israel Defense Forces chief's security guard who was arrested about two weeks ago on suspicion of attempted rape at the Tel Aviv Port, the Tel Aviv District Court cleared for publication on Wednesday.

 

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Efrati is suspected of sexually assaulting a young woman after his bachelor party. The court extended his remand by five days. The police presented the court with a "prosecutor's statement", which reveals that the indictment against him will be filed in the coming days.

 

Efrati's fiancée said at the end of the court discussion that she continues to support him, and blew kisses at him.


Efrati at work (Photo: Michael Kramer)

 

The suspect continues to insist that he did not commit the act attributed to him, despite the fact that DNA taken from his body has been matched with evidence found on the woman who was allegedly attacked.

 

He lawyers claim that he does not remember some moments from the night he was arrested on the banks of the Yarkon River.

 

It was also cleared for publication on Wednesday that the complainant, Efrati and eight eyewitnesses were brought to the Yarkon banks several days after the incident, separately. Each presented their version of what happened that night.


Efrati with police investigators near Yarkon River (Photo: Dudu Azoulay)

 

The first person to be brought to the area was the main witness, who works as a security guard in a nearby club. He told the police that he had spotted a young woman crying for help, approached her and saw Efrati lying over her.

 

When the guard asked Efrati what was going on, he replied, "Leave me alone, this is my girlfriend." The guard added that the woman was screaming and that the attacker punched her.

 

The witness said he came to the woman's rescue, causing the suspect to run away, enter the river and swim to the other side. He said the attacker then returned and that the two struggled until the police arrived and arrested Efrati.

 

In order to compare between the versions, the young woman was brought to the scene of the incident one day at 5 am. For about 10 minutes, she explained to the police officers where everything happened. When Efrati was brought to the scene, he stuck to his version that he had only gone to the river urinate and could not remember anything else.

 

The police recently changed the charges against Efrati from rape and sodomy to attempted rape and attempted sodomy.

 

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