Senior IDF officer charged with indecent acts against two female subordinates
Lieutenant colonel since released from service; indictment says he groped servicewomen, had improper intimate relationship with two more NCOs under his command
Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent.
An Israeli army officer with the rank of lieutenant colonel has been charged with indecent acts against two subordinate female soldiers, the military said Tuesday.
The publication of the indictment by the Israel Defense Forces came after the Ynet news site reported the case.
According to the indictment, the lieutenant colonel committed indecent acts against two female soldiers who served under his command, without their consent.
Ynet reported that the officer massaged the back of the first soldier in his office and touched her breasts against her will, and groped the second soldier while hugging her.
Additionally, the indictment said the officer maintained an intimate relationship with two female non-commissioned officers, also under his command, while assisting them with various issues, resulting in a conflict of interest.
The officer has since been released from army service, but the trial will continue at a military court.
“The Military Advocate General is accompanying the victims of the crime, updating them on developments, and granting them all the rights they are entitled to according to law,” the IDF said.
The IDF said it views the case, and any incident of sex crimes in the army, “with severity.”
The military has generally been criticized for its handling of sexual assault allegations.
In an ongoing case in military court, prosecutors nixed a plea deal signed with Lt. Col. Dan Sharoni, who had been accused of filming dozens of his female subordinates while nude without their knowledge. The deal, which originally included him potentially retaining his military pension, set off a firestorm of controversy about the case and about how the IDF handles sex crimes.