Judge said to reduce administrative detention for teen held over Huwara rampage

A minor sent into administrative detention for four months has had his jail term halved by a court, a legal aid group representing the suspected Jewish extremist says.

The minor, 17, was one of two suspects ordered held behind bars last week after being arrested following a deadly settler rampage through the Palestinian town of Huwara.

In a hearing, Lod District Court Judge Ruth Lorch cuts the period the teen can be held from four months to two months, according to the Honenu legal rights group, which is known for providing legal services to Israelis accused of crimes against Palestinians.

The decision comes a day after Lorch ordered administrative detention for 29-year-old David Chai Chasdai to be slashed from four months to three.

A man walks past destroyed cars at a scrapyard in the town of Huwara near Nablus in the West Bank on February 27, 2023, after they were torched overnight. (JAAFAR ASHTIYEH / AFP)

Administrative detention is a controversial practice whereby individuals can be held without charge practically indefinitely, and are not granted access to the evidence against them.

While it is rarely used against Jewish suspects, nearly 1,000 Palestinians are currently held in custody under the practice.

The two were among a handful of settlers arrested last week over the violence in Huwara, where vigilante settlers attacked Palestinians, torching cars and homes and leaving one man dead in unclear circumstances. The riot came hours after two Israeli brothers were gunned down while passing through the West Bank town.

The other suspects have all been freed, some to house arrest.

A senior security official speaking to Channel 12 news last week claimed the pair had been “planning and had carried out operations against IDF forces. [They] are extremely dangerous.”

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