Prison officer fired over claims he ‘pimped’ female guards to Palestinian inmates

Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent

Public Security Minister Omer Barlev approves the firing of a prison officer over claims he “pimped” female guards at Gilboa Prison to Palestinian terror inmates to keep the prisoners happy several years ago.

Female soldiers first alleged in 2018 that they were forced into close contact with prisoners as sexual bargaining chips, leading to them being harassed and assaulted, but the case was closed due to a lack of evidence.

In December, state prosecutors ordered police to reopen the probe and Israel Prisons Service (IPS) chief Katy Perry ordered the beginning of proceedings to oust the intelligence officer at the prison, Rani Basha, who has been implicated in the case.

“In light of the circumstances of the case, the nature of the acts to which the officer admitted, and the existing [evidence] against him at the criminal level, I would like to approve your decision to dismiss Basha, due to a serious violation of his duties as a prison guard, and due to his inadequacy to continue service in the organization,” Barlev — who oversees the IPS — writes in a letter to Perry, published by the Ynet news site.

He adds that the decision has been made in part “to prevent serious damage to the public’s trust in the [IPS].”

Basha has been on leave since November last year, after Freddy Ben Shitrit, the warden of the prison in northern Israel, made bombshell remarks regarding the allegations, which led state prosecutors to order police to reopen the probe.

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