Second ‘Prisoner X’ charged with more severe crime

Ayalon prison, where the current prisoner is being held and Zygier committed suicide (Photo: Reuters)

Ayalon prison, where the current prisoner is being held and Zygier committed suicide (Photo: Reuters)

The attorney of the late ‘Prisoner X’ Ben Zygier has revealed that the anonymous inmate being held under similar conditions to his former client is charged with a more severe crime.

Avigdor Feldman said in a radio interview that the prisoner was “a man of the secret defence services, whose work resulted in a grave security breach” which was “far more serious” than the allegations brought against Mr Zygier, who hanged himself in his cell.

Avigdor Lieberman, chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee, also spoke today of the “severity” of the charges, stating that “this is an especially serious case.”

The former foreign minister went on to defend the government’s handling of the case, a position reinforced by Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, who dismissed criticisms as “efforts to turn this into a drama.

“In Israel, prisoners don’t disappear without trial … those who were incarcerated enjoyed legal protection, and the families knew. There’s no way our people were made to vanish. This isn’t South America.”

Internal Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch also claimed that there are cases where “it is necessary to keep an inmate’s name concealed to prevent damage to state security.”

In contrast, Mr Feldman declared that the story should be made public, asserting that “Whoever opens this affair will be doing the country a great service.”

Last updated: 1:56pm, July 10 2013