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Photo: Herzel Yosef
David Moyal
Photo: Herzel Yosef
Israeli gets lenient sentence after taking part in lynch of Eritrean
David Moyal gets only 100 days of community service, 8 months of probation and ordered to pay NIS 2,000 in compensation for his part in the beating of Haftom Zarhum, an Eritrean national mistaken for the terrorist who carried out an attack at the Be'er Sheva Central Bus Station.
David Moyal, who was convicted for his part in the lynching of an Eritrean asylum seeker thought to be a terrorist, was sentenced to 100 days of community service and eight months of probation, and was ordered to pay NIS 2,000 in compensation under a plea deal.

 

 

On October 19, 2015, Golani soldier Sgt. Omri Levy was murdered and ten others were wounded in a terror attack at the Be'er Sheva Central Bus Station.

 

During the commotion of the attack, Eritrean national Haftom Zarhum was shot by the station's security chief after being mistaken for the terrorist. Other civilians on the scene, who also thought he was the terrorist, severely beat him. He eventually succumbed to his wounds.

 

David Moyal (Photo: Herzel Yosef)
David Moyal (Photo: Herzel Yosef)
 

Some eye witnesses said that there were calls of "Die, you garbage" made at Zarhum, and that benches and chairs were thrown at him and he was repeatedly kicked.

 

Zarhum had a temporary permit to stay in Israel until December of that year. He was believed to have been in Be'er Sheva to renew his work visa.

 

Police launched an investigation into the lynching, announcing they will work to find the civilians who took part in Zarhum's beating.

 

Haftom Zarhum
Haftom Zarhum

 

In January 2016, four Israelis were indicted for their involvement in the lynch: Israel Prison Service Officer Ronen Cohen, IDF soldier Yaakov Shimba, and civilians Evyatar Dimri and David Moyal.

 

The four were only charged with aggravated battery because an autopsy found Zarhum's death was caused as a result of the gunshot wound he suffered from the station's security chief, and not as a result of the beating.

 

"When the deceased was lying on the floor, bleeding—while it was clear to all that he was helpless, and a large crowd of people gathered around him—the defendant David Moyal approached him and slammed him forcefully with a bench that was nearby, with the intention of causing him serious harm, disability or maiming him," the indictment said. "Some of those present at the scene pulled the defendant away and lifted the bench off the decreased, who remained lying on the floor."

 

Zarhum bleeding on the ground (Photo: Idan Moshe)
Zarhum bleeding on the ground (Photo: Idan Moshe)

 

"Shortly afterwards, soldier Yaakov Shimba and Evyatar Dimri approached the deceased and kicked him forcefully in the head and upper body," the indictment continued.

 

"While the deceased was still lying on the floor, in a pool of his own blood, helpless, Prisons Service officer Ronen Cohen and another prison guard who was with him approached (Zarhum), picked up the bench, and threw it at the deceased so it would be over him and prevent him from moving," the indictment went on to say.

 

After the sentencing, Moyal said he was "glad it's all behind me. I'm remorseful and regret what had happened."

 

His attorney Eyal Gabbay added, "We're wrapping up a very long process that lasted two and a half years, during which the defendant suffered from the drawn out legal proceedings, at the end of which we reached a plea deal that changed the indictment entirely. It's clear to him that he hurt someone that should not have been hurt, and that mentally shook him. I hope he recovers."

 


First published: 07.04.18, 11:20
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