The High Court of Justice on Sunday authorized the Shin Bet security service to continue preventing three suspects in a fatal arson attack in the West Bank this summer from meeting with their lawyers.
The three, who are suspected of involvement in the July fire bomb attack in the Palestinian village of Duma that killed three members of the Dawabsheh family, have been in custody since late November and have yet to meet with their attorneys. By law, the head of a Shin Bet investigative team can prevent a suspect from meeting with a lawyer for up to 10 days. A district court judge can extend the period to 21 days, after which there is no legal basis for prohibiting a meeting.
The detainees’ lawyers petitioned the High Court, demanding that they be allowed to meet with their clients. They argued that the suspects do not constitute an immediate threat, a “ticking bomb,” as they put it. The Shin Bet, in turn, stressed the “great importance” of preventing the meetings “in light of the seriousness of the offenses attributed to the appellants.”
The court accepted the security service’s argument. Justice Salim Joubran wrote the decision, which was , in opinion published on the court’s website, wrote that he was persuaded, based on his review of classified materials, that such meetings could disrupt the investigation.
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