Head of Sicarii Underground is Released from Jail on Bail

A Jerusalem man suspected of heading a Jewish underground group called Sicarii was released from jail Thursday on $25,000 bail.

But Tel Aviv District Court Judge Ariel Even-Ari ordered the suspect, 46-year-old Yoel Adler, held under house arrest with his telephone disconnected, and forbade any remarks by him to be published or broadcast by the media.

Adler, a contractor, was arrested June 3 on suspicion of directing a wave of violence against Arabs and prominent Israelis he considered left wing.

Adler has been formally charged with arson, causing bodily harm and membership in an illegal organization. He denies the charges.

He is the alleged founder and chief operative of Sicarii, which takes its name from the “sica,” or dagger carried by a radical gang of zealots active during the Jewish revolt against Rome in the first century C.E.

A search of Adler’s home yielded pamphlets that police said incited lawless behavior, and lists of names of prominent personalities. They also found a copy of the Sicarii oath.

Adler’s group, which police say consists of himself and no more than one or two accomplices, is accused of murdering one Arab and wounding others during a shooting spree at the Jaffa Gate in the Old City in April 1989.

The right-wing Tehiya and Moledet parties, meanwhile, have dissociated themselves from Adler, as has the Temple Mount Faithful.

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