Russian Compound, Jerusalem - Remand Extension, Barred (from meeting with attorney)
Judge: Gal Rosenzweig
Police Investigator: Yitzhak (Itzik) Yakobov
Defence Attorneys: Ma'amoun Hashim & Shakirat Fahmi
9 files were brought for hearings today, among them 5 of detainees prohibited from meeting a lawyer.
There is no air to breathe in the courtroom where remand extensions are heard.
The air conditioner does not work, and it is difficult to stay for a longer period in the room.
The first detainee was brought in, looking very frightened.
The judge asked him whether he knew what he was accused of.
The detainee responded: "Of what is written there," pointing in the direction of the file.
Contrary to other occasions, there was some kind of translation.
Judge Rosenzweig asked the police investigator several questions for clarification. It seemed that the questions stressed the investigator somewhat, because the judges generally accept almost immediately whatever the investigators have to say.
The judge closed the case with a 9 day extension of remand, until the file is brought to court for trial.
He asked the accused whether he understands and agrees.
The conclusion was translated to the detainee. He agreed (not surprising!) and was removed from the courtroom.
The investigator approached us and demanded, that we take no notes in the next hearing, because "our notes go on the internet and to the whole world, and that's not good."
We said that we protest about not being permitted to write. "The material is all classified" - "is that not enough for you?" He did not accept our contentions. We asked him whether his ban was not subject to the judge's approval. The investigator replied, that he decides and does not need the judge's approval.
We stopped writing whenever the detainee was under prohibition of meeting a lawyer.
The third detainee was not prohibited from meeting a lawyer.
The judge studied the file for a while, and requested explanations from Itzik. Itzik was compelled to answer. The impression was that he is not used to these kind of questions.
While examining the detainee, the defence attorney, Mamoun Hashim, asked the the investigator several questions. Most of the answers were: "the material is classified."
Itzik requested the assistance of the judge to limit the defence attorney's questions, which in his opinion were too many, and unnecessarily extended the length of the hearing, but the judge did not intervene.
Itzik was restless - apparently because he realised that, unlike to what he is accustomed to,
he did not manage to deal with all the files set for today's hearings.