It has been cleared for publication that police have arrested the mother and grandfather of a missing four-year-old girl in connection to her murder - though no body has been recovered thus far.
The grandfather confessed to the murder, and reenacted it. He alleges the killing was accidental, and confirmed he had dumped the girl's body in the Yarkon river.
Both suspects were arrested last Tuesday, and a court remanded them for a third time.
The gag order on the case police officials are openly calling the most appalling murder in the country's history was lifted Tuesday morning after a French newspaper printed the full story, which has been subject to rife speculation since it broke on Sunday.
The true story, it would seem, is even more shocking than the worst case scenarios concocted by the Israeli rumor mill.
The story begins six years ago, when a Netanya resident called Binyamin Ron met a 23-year-old French citizen, Marie Pizem. The two married and had a daughter, whom they called Rose. They alternated residences between Israel and France, with Rose in tow.
Police search party with Rose's picture (Photo: Yaron Brener)
But after several years their relationship turned sour, and the couple divorced. Marie chose to settle in Israel, while Rose remained with her father in France.
Then, in a familial twist of events worthy of any soap opera, Marie began a romantic relationship with her former father-in-law, Rose's grandfather, 45-year-old Ronny Ron Yaakov.
Ron became the head of the family, and Marie bore him two girls – now aged 18 and 10 months. The new couple first lived in Modi'in before moving to an apartment building in Netanya.
Marie regained custody of Rose in December 2007, after the girl had been hospitalized in France and Marie had suspected her daughter had been abused. The girl joined her family in Israel.
Five months later, in May 2008, Rose disappeared. No one reported the matter to the police.
Great-grandmother became suspicious
The only one to suspect something was amiss was Vivian, Rose's 67-year-old great-grandmother and Ron's mother. At first when she asked where her great-granddaughter was – Ron told her she had been sent to a boarding school.
But Vivian grew suspicious, and three months later, she turned to the National Council for the Child, who alerted the municipal welfare authorities – and the latter, in turn, first reported the story to the police.
Investigators visited the couple's apartment several times, but found it empty. When they finally located Marie and Ronny and questioned them, the two gave strange and contradictory statements.
Police trawl Yarkon waters (Photo: Ofer Amram)
The local detectives decided to arrest all three family members, and the investigation was handed over to the Central Police Unit.
Police suspected Ron and Marie conspired to murder Rose, while Vivian was held on suspicion of being an accomplice to the plot.
The grandfather, Ron, confessed to his interrogators that he had murdered Rose, put her little body into a bag and dumped it into the Yarkon River.
Police officers who searched the couple's apartment for any clue that could lead to the girl uncovered a stack of letters written by Rose's mother and never mailed. In them she repeatedly says that she does not want the girl, further implicating her in Rose's murder.
Police combed the river with the assistance of volunteer divers, but so far have found no trace of a body. They called off the search efforts earlier on Tuesday, and are still hoping someone will contact their hotline with more information.
But Ron also 'confessed' to several other scenarios - later telling investigators that Rose was sent to religious school, sent abroad, or sold to a Palestinian.
His attorney, Revital Swaid, says her client "confessed to anything they asked, because he was willing to tell them whatever they wanted – so long as they released his partner (Marie)."
When the three were brought before a court to extend their arrest, Ron managed to blow a kiss to Marie and yelled "I love you" to her before police separated the two. Vivian has been placed under house arrest.
The grandfather: I beat the girl when she cried
Ron's attorney initially slammed the police for arresting Ron with little evidence, however he later confessed to accidentally killing Rose.
According to Ron, three months ago he was driving to Vivian's house with Rose, who was in the back seat. He said Rose had been eating a snack, and was screaming and crying. He, in a momentary outburst, smacked the girl and she fell silent.
After some time, he said, he noticed that her head was limp. He got out of the car and walked around to the backseat, she wasn't moving. Ron said that after determining that the girl was indeed dead, he picked up her body and hid it in the trunk of his car. He then drove to the Yarkon River, and dumped the body into the water.
Ron told the investigators that upon returning home – he told Marie that he had taken Rose to a religious boarding school.
Ron said he became depressed following the incident, and considered ending his own life. He also said that he returned to the Yarkon to ask for the girl's forgiveness. Police took him to the bank of the river, where he reenacted his actions.
And if this case did not seem perverse and spine-chilling enough, another detail was added to the events.
It turns out that the family members have a familial connection to a recent murder case that appalled the nation. Sigalit Kirschner, who was killed in the Kadita ecological community in the Galilee with her new husband David Kazashtchar, is Roni Ron’s sister and Vivian’s mother.
However, aside from the familial connection, there is no relation between the two cases.