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Israeli Officers Detained for Smuggling Phones to Palestinian Prisoners

Israeli Officers Detained for Smuggling Phones to Palestinian Prisoners

Tuesday, 14 January, 2020 - 12:00
Israeli security forces arrest Palestinian men following clashes outside Jerusalem's Old city (file photo: Reuters)
Tel Aviv- Asharq Al-Awsat

Israeli authorities arrested a group of officers of the Prison Service and referred them to investigation for allegedly smuggling mobile phones to Palestinian prisoners in exchange for bribes, announced the Israeli Ministry of Justice.

The ministry said it identified this group after receiving intelligence, but the arrests were only carried out after the phones were seized.

Last week, Israeli Special Forces of the Prison Service raided the Ramon Prison and rampaged the prisoners’ cells. The forces found and confiscated about a dozen cell phones.

Police said that the detainees who benefited from this smuggling are Fatah prisoners, who spent many years in prison because of carrying out armed operations against the Israeli army and settlers.

The officer in charge who supervised the smuggling operation was arrested on Monday. He has been convicted of several charges including: “Working to help a terrorist organization, establishing a prohibited relationship between jailer and prisoner, receiving bribes, fraud, breach of trust, and conspiring to commit a crime.”

The Prison Services said that it completed this operation that lasted for several weeks, confirming that the prisoners who received these phones will be put on special trial for punishment.

It is worth noting that the occupation authorities prohibit Palestinian prisoners from making phone calls to their families.

The family of an officer of the border guards who died during a ramming incident in the occupied East Jerusalem in 2017 sent a letter to the Minister of Internal Security, Gilad Erdan.

In the letter, they requested charging the officers with “treason" for providing the phones to the "terrorists with blood-stained hands" to continue giving orders from inside the prison to Palestinian youths to carry out more killings.

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