Menu JTA Search

American Held in Israel

A Jerusalem Magistrate today ordered the extended detention of a 32-year-old American citizen, Iliya HaZeev, as the suspected leader of a gang of Jewish vandals who broke into Arab homes in Hebron, beat up the occupants and smashed their furniture two weeks ago HaZeev; reportedly a wounded Vietnam war veteran, has a record of arrest in the U.S. on suspicion of conspiring to murder a Palestine Liberation Organization representative there. He was married to an Israeli woman who divorced him six months ago.

He and six others arrested in connection with the assault are members of Rabbi Meir Kahane’s “Kach” faction. The police are also holding Avigdor Erskin, 18, an immigrant from the Soviet Union and are searching for another man believed involved in the Hebron incident. The remaining five suspects have been detained for resisting a police search of their homes in the Orthodox township of Kiryat Arba near Hebron.