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Monday, 26 December 2011

Israeli Military Courts Achieve a 99.7% Conviction Rate

Even Nazi Germany Did Not Achieve This Rate of Conviction Until Special Peoples Courts Were Set Up Under Ronald Freiser

What kind of state achieves a 99.7% conviction rate in its Military Courts? Even Hitler only managed 90.3% in the Saaar plebicite, although to be fair, in 1938 with the Anchluss in Austria he improved on this, to the extent of achieving 99.7% of the vote. So the ‘only democracy in the Middle East’ can proudly proclaim that it has a higher rate of acquittals in its Military Courts where it comes to trying Palestinians in the West Bank than Austrians who were credited with voting ‘no’.

Of course this isn’t quite fair. Undoubtedly in Austria negative votes were discarded and even more voters were deterred from voting in the first place because they knew that fascists did not respect the anonymity of ballots. Whereas in the West Bank we can be sure that the 99.7% of convictions are accurate. But of course most Palestinians are pressurised into pleading guilty because their confessions, which are almost always accepted by the courts. ‘Confessions’ take place in the period when they are denied lawyers and that period can be 28 days, more than enough time to beat someone into submission And given that plead bargaining is integral to the system, then pleading guilty and accepting a lesser sentence is preferable to being remanded and found guilty, as nearly all prisoners are, of an ‘offence’ carrying a higher sentence.

Dogs are used against children and adults alike. Another practice the SS guards in extermination/concentration camps used. Because of the comparison with the SS and Nazi use of dogs, the Israeli Police never use dogs against Jewish demonstrators. They are used soley for Palestinian demonstrations (which of course Israeli Jews attend - but they're not really Jews anyway!)!

Report shows the military appeals courts decidedly favor the prosecution, with judges accepting 67 percent of prosecution appeals, as opposed to only 33 percent of appeals filed by the defense.
By Chaim Levinson

Virtually all - 99.74 percent, to be exact - of cases heard by the military courts in the territories end in a conviction, according to data in the military courts' annual report, which has been obtained by Haaretz.

The report also shows that the military appeals courts decidedly favor the prosecution, with appeals court judges accepting 67 percent of appeals filed by the prosecution, as opposed to only 33 percent of appeals filed by the defense.

The military courts, headed by Col. Aharon Mishnayot, deal with all criminal and security cases involving Palestinians, from their detention through their appeals. Only very exceptional, usually symbolic cases are heard by Israeli courts.

The military court system also includes committees that hear appeals against decisions by Israel Defense Forces commanders, committees that approve administrative detentions, and a committee that approves expulsion orders.

According to the report, 9,542 cases were wrapped up in 2010, of which 2,016 involved hostile terror activity, 763 disorderly conduct and the rest Palestinians staying illegally in Israel, traffic offenses and criminal activity.

The report states that 25 cases ended in full acquittal, meaning that the conviction rate is 99.74 percent. But 4 percent of the cases result in at least partial acquittal on one or more of the charges.

The administrative detention panels, headed by Lt. Col. Shlomi Kokhav, handled 714 requests for administrative detention in 2010, of which 98.77 percent were approved.

Only 51 percent of these requests were honored in full, however. The rest offset days the suspect had already been held, or put certain restrictions on the relevant military commander.

Yesh Din report finds Palestinian detainees denied due process rights in military court hearings. According to group, almost 100% of trials lead to convictions, average hearing is two-minutes long. Army: Report full of mistakes
Associated PressPublished: 01.06.08, Israel News

An Israeli human rights group charges that Israel's military court system for Palestinian suspects in the West Bank produces almost automatic convictions.

A report by the Yesh Din organization found that in 2006, more than 99.7% of those accused are found guilty, some 95% of the cases end with a plea bargain and the average hearing is just two minutes long.

Yesh Din, which said that its inquiry was the first of its kind, found major failings in the court's due process: Hearings were held in Hebrew and the Arabic-speaking suspects often did not understand the charges brought against them, they were unable to present a full defense or have an effective counsel.

"Most are detained in Israel and their attorneys are not able to meet them," said Michael Sfard, Yesh Din's legal counsel. In addition, minors were often tried as adults and detained at length before being charged. Sfard said the 0.29% acquittal rating in 2006 (23 out of 9,123) was most jarring. "We think that this is an outrageous number which clouds the presumption of innocence," he said. "It is unreasonable that a justice system will have such a low figure of victory of the defense."
The army said it had not been provided the full Yesh Din report and could only respond to an initial draft. Still, the army said in a statement, the report was filled with flaws, faulty research methods and mistaken analysis. The army said its court system operated with full disclosure and stressed that defendants were provided fair trials, hearings had simultaneous translations and defendants were provided with all the material against them in advance.

'Some 9,000 prisoners currently held in Israel'

The military courts were established after Israel conquered the West Bank and Gaza in the 1967 war to administer Palestinians charged with security-related and criminal offenses.
More than 150,000 Palestinians have been prosecuted in these courts since 1990, and about half the 9,000 prisoners currently being held in Israel were sent to prison by the military courts, according to Yesh Din. Yesh Din's board includes Michael Ben Yair, a former Israeli attorney general, retired Gen. Shlomo Lahat, a former Tel Aviv mayor, and Shulamit Aloni, a former cabinet minister.

Two weeks ago, the group faulted the military for not opening enough investigations into allegations of mistreatment of Palestinians.

The Israeli military launched 207 investigations into troops' suspected crimes against Palestinians in 2007, up 36% from the year before, the military said.

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