The Supreme Court has overturned a Tel Aviv District Court ruling issued several months ago in the case of Mustafa Dirani's chief interrogator and ruled that the State can review his personal file and question his police supervisor.
Dirani, a Hezbollah operative, was captured by Israel in 1994 and released in 2004 in the framework of a prisoner exchange deal with the Lebanese terror group. Before his release he filed a claim for NIS 6 million ($1.75 million), claiming he was raped by one of his Israeli interrogators.
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"Captain George," the former IDF interrogator who investigated Dirani, filed a NIS 5.5 million ($1.4 million) lawsuit against the Defense Ministry in January, claiming that he suffered psychological damage as a result of Dirani’s rape allegations.
"Captain George," whose identity is subject to a strict gag order, served as an officer in Unit 504 of the IDF’s Intelligence Division and was appointed to the investigation against Dirani.
On Tuesday the Supreme Court ruled that the State's actions to protect itself from the lawsuit were within its legal rights.
At the time, "Captain George," who was appointed to a high-ranking police post in 2010, demanded that the State be forbidden from reviewing his personal files or questioning his police supervisor.
The Tel Aviv Magistrates' Court determined that the prosecution had abused its authority when it requested to question the Jerusalem District Police chief without seeking the court's authorization first.
The judge ordered that a scheduled meeting between the prosecution and Captain George's police supervisor be cancelled. The court also ruled that the State cannot review the former interrogator's personal files "or any other documentation" without seeking the court's approval first.
The Tel Aviv District Court supported the decision, saying the interrogator's files from his current position with Israel police are irrelevant to the case.
But Supreme Court Justice Zvi Zilbertal accepted the State's appeal on Tuesday and said the State had the right to turn to Captain George's police supervisor and ask to see his personal files.
The judge said the State does not need the court's permission to "make use of information and documents in the possession of one of its authorities in order to protect itself from a civil lawsuit."
Dirani was captured as part of the effort to obtain information as to the whereabouts of missing Israel Air Force navigator Ron Arad. He was released in exchange for kidnapped Israeli businessman Elhanan Tenenbaum and the bodies of three IDF soldiers.