Guard arrested after contacting anti-assimilation group

March 7, 2016  

A female security guard working at a Jerusalem police station was arrested and sent to house arrest after allegedly contacting the anti-assimilation group Lehava several weeks ago.

The guard is suspected of having passed on information to Lehava regarding a female police officer who reportedly is having a romantic relationship with an Arab man.

After the officer lent the guard her cellular phone, the guard noticed messages indicating a relationship between the officer and an Arab man. After taking screenshots of the messages, she forwarded the material to Lehava.

A member of Lehava later contacted the police officer’s brother, notifying him of the relationship.

Once the officer discovered what had transpired, she filed a formal complaint against both the security guard and the Lehava activist who spoke with her brother. Police quickly arrested the guard.

The judge noted that Lehava is a legal organization and that it had committed no crime in contacting the police officer’s family. The police’s request to extend the guard’s arrest were rejected, and she was released to house arrest.

The Lehava activist involved was brought in for questioning and released on his own recognizance. It remains unclear if a formal indictment will be brought against the security guard.

Lehava director Bentzi Gopshtain responded to the incident noting the organization’s service to families desperate to prevent their children from assimilating and leaving the Jewish people.

“We [Lehava] get a huge amount of calls from families asking for assistance, saying ‘Help us, our daughter is going out with Arabs.’ We contact those girls and explain to them, respectfully, what they’re likely to encounter [in such a relationship]. Most of the time, thank God, we are successful.”

“In this particular case we contacted the family, who were stunned by the news and tried unsuccessfully to extricate her [from the relationship]. Unfortunately, when we file complaints against Arabs who attack or harass Jewish girls, the police aren’t quick to address it; but when a police officer is [almost] taken out [of a relationship], all of the sudden they rush to interrogate whoever gave us the information and the Jew who tried to help this girl.”

“We’ll continue to help these Jewish girls.”

This is not the first time police have arrested individuals for passing on information to Lehava.

In February, Border Police officer Matan Amichai was arrested for photographing the identification card of a Jewish girl traveling to Eilat with another Jewish girl and two Arab men from Silwan in Jerusalem. Amichai later forwarded the material on to Lehava.

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