The Petah Tikva District Court on Sunday authorized a plea bargain in the case of the State vs. brothers Adir and Naor Sudmi, who were accused of the murder of seven-year-old Leon Kalantarov in Bnei Ayish in 2009.
The brothers pled guilty to manslaughter as part of a plea bargain. Naor Sudmi was sentenced to 22 years in jail, while his twin, Adir was sentenced to 19 years in prison. The two were also convicted of several counts of sexual abuse.
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"The court finds that it is lacking the necessary words to describe the atrocities perpetrated by the defendants," the ruling read.
The case dates back to December 2009, when – according to court documents – the twins spotted seven-year-old Kalantarov near their Bnei Ayish home, in southern Israel.
Indescribable atrocities. The Sudmi brothers (Photo: Yaron Brener)
They lured him into the house and proceeded to molest him for several hours, before strangling him to death. They then wrapped his body in a plastic sheet and placed it underneath one of the beds in their room.
A police search for Kalantarov was ongoing at the time. As part of the canvas, police officers arrived at the Sudmi's home, where the body was eventually found.
"The State met with substantial difficulties in its pursuit of a murder charge," the ruling noted.
"After considering all the relevant arguments, the severity of the defendants' actions and the loss of a child's life, as well as the emotional damage caused to his family and the need for deterrence… the court has come to the conclusion that the punishment offered in the plea bargain is a balanced and sufficient one, and meets the needs of the public interest," it said.
The court approved the plea bargain despite the family's adamant objections.
The Sudmi brothers' defense attorney, Yaron Forrer welcomed the court's decision, saying that despite the family's objections, "The sentence is considerable. The defendants have expressed remorse for their actions."
Attorney Nurit Cornhouser, for the State Prosecutor's Office, said the plea bargain was an achievement for the State: "The court sanctioned a harsh plea which guaranteed both defendants be removed from society for years to come. The case was plagued with evidentiary difficulties which could have resulted in one of the defendants being acquitted… we believe this is a good result."
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