Israel's Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger has called on defendants going before the bench to "stop sporting a kippa just for show."
The rabbi made the comment in a Rosh Hashana ceremony in Jerusalem on Thursday and attended by past and present police commissioners, as well as Internal Security Minister Avi Dichter. Metzger spoke of the phenomenon in which newly defendants choose to appear for their court dates wearing the traditional Jewish skullcaps for the sake of appearances.
"I cannot judge someone's heart," said Rabbi Metzger. "If someone has committed a crime and truly wished to repent, it is, by all means, the right thing to do; but this new thing we're seeing, where killers are arrested and then they wear a kippa when appearing before the judge, is despicable.
"It is an abuse of religion and a complete disregard of the judges' intelligence," he said.
Rabbi Metzger then proceeded to wish the police forces a happy, less busy new year and thank them for their dedication to their job.