Vehicles illegally towed by police in Yitzhar, then returned

Tuesday, May 22, 2018, 18:12 In the early hours of the morning on Monday, May 21, dozens of Yasam (Special Forces) and Central Unit of Yehuda and Shomron policemen arrived in Yitzhar without impound warrants and with tow trucks. They towed vehicles from various sites, including the Yitzhar garage, which is privately owned by a resident of the community. The garage owner asked the policemen to leave the area of the garage as he explained that the garage is privately owned and the vehicles are designated to be used for spare parts. The policemen refused to leave the site, entered the area of the garage without an explanation or a clear reason, and towed two of the vehicles. Throughout Yitzhar the police impounded several inoperative vehicles, one of which is kept by a family next to their home and has served as a storage shed for approximately a decade. The police towed a car from another family. When they reached the gate of the community an argument ensued and in the end the police returned the vehicle to its owners. Honenu Attorney Menasheh Yado, who is representing, the garage owner, wrote an urgent letter to the legal adviser of the Central Unit of the Yehuda and Shomron police, pointing out that the entry to private property was without a warrant, illegal, and “One may assume that such a brutal and crude violation of the law was done with the backing of senior officials.” Following an exchange of words, once the police understood that they had carried out an illegal operation, the legal adviser decided that the vehicles would be returned. On the afternoon of the same day the police returned the vehicles to where they had been. “The impoundment of the the vehicles was illegal and carried out contrary to the basic rules of good governance. Above all it was cruel, immoral and unfair. Our urgent intervention caused the police to return the vehicles. However the police are supposed to not even attempt such an act,” stated Honenu Attorney Menasheh Yado. Yitzhar residents called the operation a police price tag incident and one of them made a statement: “This was a police price tag incident. Dozens of policemen arrived, began illegally towing vehicles without warrants or authorization, as if the police have nothing to do. The [Arab] town of Hawara, right next to Yitzhar, is a jungle. There, traffic laws are wantonly disobeyed, cars and trucks are parked in the middle of the road, there are vehicles without license plates, let alone registration and insurance, and you won’t see the police in action. What is important to them is impounding a vehicle which serves as a storage shed in Yitzhar.”

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