A former IDF
soldier was sentenced by a military court to three months of community service after being convicted of abusing stray cats
on the base he served at.
Two years ago, the soldier was convicted of killing two cats on base after attacking them with a shovel. He was demoted to private and charged with a NIS 1,500 ($392) fine.
Two of the soldier's friends who allegedly assisted him in his crime are still being trialed.
In one of the incidents, the soldier bashed the cat's head with a shovel. In a separate incident, he buried a cat alive. The soldier and his friends claimed that the many stray cats on the base were a health hazard and that they disrupted the soldiers' work on base quite often.
Prior to committing the heinous act, the soldiers wrote a letter to their commander and signed a petition in effort to rid the base of cats, however, their commanders failed to do a thing.
After telling their commander that they had killed a cat, the commander apparently said: "Way to go."
The commander, a sergeant major, was brought to a disciplinary hearing and was sentenced to a fine.
The soldier further claimed that the cats had been eating his food. According to him, on one occasion, he brought his lunch into the bedroom and left it there for several moments. When he returned, he found a cat eating his food.
During the trial, the soldier's father claimed that he had had to give his son money to buy food due to the diseases spread by cats in the base's food.
The prosecution in the case demanded that the soldier be sentenced to a year in prison. Meanwhile the soldier's attorney, Idan Dvir claimed that his client's offences were not "abuse for the sake of abuse," and cannot be disconnected from the animal control problem on the base. "By eating the soldiers' food, the neglected cats were intentionally provoking the soldiers," he claimed.
In their verdict, the judges said that the "reality on the base did not justify the defendant's actions." However, they took the defendant's repentance into consideration and the fact that he did not have a criminal record.