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Kahane Offers ‘deal’ to Justice Minister

September 26, 1972
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Rabbi Meir Kahane, leader of the Jewish Defense League, has offered to trade information if charges were quashed against JDL members and Amitai Paglin, a former Irgun leader, accused of trying to smuggle arms and ammunition out of the country for a counter-terrorist campaign against Arabs in the US and Europe. Kahane’s “deal” with Justice Minister Yaacov Shimshon Shapiro was confirmed today by government sources. They stressed, however, that the Justice Minister promised nothing either on behalf of the government or on behalf of the courts.

The ball is now in Kahane’s court. He must give the agreed information to the police, the sources said today. They said that Shapiro met with Kahane yesterday and made it clear to him that what the JDL has been doing by its own admission–smuggling arms out of the country for a counter-terrorist campaign against Arabs–was illegal.

Shapiro told the JDL leader that the government had no intention of letting other people handle the security of Israelis and other Jews abroad. Kahane reportedly conceded this and admitted that the JDL “made a mistake.” He promised that no more attempts would be made by the JDL to smuggle arms out of Israel. But he said that before the “deal” was final, he had to “consult” with Paglin and Abraham Hershkovitz, a JDL member arrested at Lod Airport a week ago when he tried to leave the country with a crate of weapons and ammunition falsely labeled “biscuit machinery.”

Paglin, 50, remained under semi-house arrest today. He was detained after Hershkovitz was arrested. Police failed on Friday to obtain an extension of their detention order for Paglin but a district court judge agreed to order the former Irgun operations chief to remain in a hotel and authorized police to monitor telephone calls he made and received.

Paglin spent the Succoth holiday at a Tel Aviv hotel under the surveillance of plainclothesmen. He received visitors and reportedly had many telephone calls including one from a general on active duty. He is to remain at the hotel another three days. Police sources said his further interrogation would depend on the outcome of the interrogation of Joseph Schneider, an emigre from the Soviet Union who is secretary of the Israeli chapter of the JDL. Schneider, arrested last Friday, was released yesterday.

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