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Saturday, July 13, 2013

Israel - Another inappropriate remark by judge surfaces

"So what if he licks her, we need to check whether the act is of a sexual nature." This statement was allegedly made by Judge Natan Nachmani during a 2008 hearing discussing a complaint made by a father against a relative who he said "licks" his daughter's breasts.

The girl's father is unable forget the judge's remarks. "I carry this sick statement with me until this very day, it's hard for me. I don't understand – is it allowed to lick a child's breasts or isn't it?"
The father asked that Nachmani recuse himself, but the judge, who retired from the bench this year, refused. The father then filed a complaint with the Ombudsman of the Judiciary but the complaint was thrown out.

"In his decision, the judge states that the police did not find evidence to support the complainant's claim about the relative's behavior and that having heard both sides he himself could not find a basis for this claim," the ombudsman said in a statement.

Last May, Judge Nissim Yeshaya who caused a stir by saying "some girls enjoy rape" announced he is stepping down.

Judge Yeshaya of the District Court in Tel Aviv made the outrageous statement during a hearing on the rape six years ago of a 13-year-old girl by four Palestinian youths from the Shuafat refugee camp, Army Radio reported. The rape victim was not present at the hearing.

Speaking to Ynet, the judge initially denied that he had made the remarks, but later on admitted: "I just said 'I'm not even sure why he's licking,' I never said it is allowed to do things that are forbidden."

When Ynet reminded Nachmani that he said it should be examined whether the act was of a sexual nature, he responded: "Right. OK. It really could be. I don't remember the specifics."

The courts authority spokesperson's office said in response, "The query relates to a case from 2008 that is confidential by law. 

Therefore we cannot address the proceedings. Judge Nachmani has retired from the bench. However, the case was handled in accordance with procedures. The claims are not fully verified."

The Ombudsman's office stated that "due to reasons of confidentiality, no questions can be answered, even though more than four years have passed since the relevant discussion in court. 

Therefore the ombudsman turned to the Supreme Court president and justice minister, who are authorized by law to allow the publication of details of a complaint, and requested they permit the publication of details of the complaint in question.

"Since the requested permit has yet to be given, the ombudsman will not respond to questions. 

The ombudsman sees fit to add that the facts, including the statement attributed to the judge, are not accurate and do no reflect reality."

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