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Father of alleged TA gunman suspected of being accomplice

Court extends remand for Mohammed Milhem by 2 days, keeps several others in custody as manhunt for his son persists

Mohammed Milhem at the Haifa Magistrate's Court on Tuesday, January 5, 2016 (Channel 2 screenshot)
Mohammed Milhem at the Haifa Magistrate's Court on Tuesday, January 5, 2016 (Channel 2 screenshot)

The Haifa Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday remanded for two days the father of a fugitive man suspected of shooting up a Tel Aviv bar on Friday, killing two Israelis, before going on to kill a cab driver elsewhere in the city.

Mohammed Milhem, the father of 29-year-old Nashat Milhem, was arrested and questioned Tuesday along with five others. He is suspected of being an accessory to the murder, and of obstructing the investigation.

Police had asked the court to keep Mohammed Milhem in custody for 12 days.

The suspected killer’s uncle and several other unnamed relatives and friends were also remanded Tuesday in connection with the attack.

But the court ordered police to release Milhem’s brother Jaudat from custody.

Nashat Milhem, the Arab Israeli man who allegedly carried out the shooting attack in Tel Aviv on January 1, 2016. (Israel Police)
Nashat Milhem, the Arab Israeli man who allegedly carried out the shooting attack in Tel Aviv on January 1, 2016. (Israel Police)

The court ordered the brother, Jaudat Milhem, not to enter his hometown, the Israeli Arab town of Arara, until further notice. Jaudat Milhem was arrested following the attack on suspicion that he had been an accomplice.

Tuesday marked the second time that Mohammed Milhem, the father, was arrested since the deadly attack last Friday. On Monday, Mohammed Milhem made a televised plea to his son to turn himself in, as Tel Aviv residents hunkered down amid ongoing searches for the suspected terrorist.

“Contact me,” he said, appealing directly to his son. “I will help you. Let’s end this saga. These are difficult days for the family.”

Jaudat Milhem (Channel 2 screenshot)
Jaudat Milhem (Channel 2 screenshot)

The deadly shooting took place Friday outside the Simta bar on Tel Aviv’s busy Dizengoff Street. Shift manager Alon Bakal, 26, and patron Shimon Ruimi, 30, were killed in a hail of bullets as the gunman opened fire with a submachine gun he stole from his father. Seven people were wounded.

Later in the day, after fleeing the scene, Milhem shot dead an Arab Israeli cab driver, police say.

Since Friday afternoon, Nashat Milhem has remained at large. Authorities have warned he is armed, dangerous and capable of striking again.

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