search

Son to be charged with murdering mother, hiding her body under sand and leaves

Police allege 27-year-old Muad Hib from Zarzir hid 46-year-old Rasha Muklasha’s corpse near the Jordan River last month

Police forces at the scene of the alleged murder of a 46-year-old woman from Nof Hagalil, near the Yarden Haharari section of the Jordan River, on August 7, 2021. (Israel Police)
Police forces at the scene of the alleged murder of a 46-year-old woman from Nof Hagalil, near the Yarden Haharari section of the Jordan River, on August 7, 2021. (Israel Police)

Police announced Sunday that prosecutors intend to charge a 27-year-old man from northern Israel with the murder of his mother last month, as well as hiding her body.

The indictment is expected to be filed on Monday, with Muad Hib from the town of Zarzir accused in the murder of his mother, 46-year-old Rasha Muklasha, from Nof Hagalil.

Last month, police arrested Hib and two of his siblings over the alleged murder, a day before Muklasha’s body was found near the Jordan River, covered in sand and leaves.

The victim’s body was found some 26 hours after the three brothers rammed a police roadblock in the area, police said at the time. It was not immediately clear if the other two brothers, aged 23 and 20, would be charged.

Police also said they would ask the Nazareth District Court to extend Hib’s arrest until the end of the proceedings.

During the initial investigation, police noted that Muklasha, originally from Zarzir, had gone missing. Hib came up as a suspect in the roadblock ramming, police said.

Later that day, the suspect rammed a second roadblock that had been set up as part of the investigation, and he was arrested after a brief chase near Nahalal, police said. The suspect’s two brothers were arrested separately.

The body of the murdered mother was found following an intensive search, which included the use of helicopters, canine, cavalry and tracker units, police said. Her body was found near a section of the Jordan River in northern Israel.

Details relating to the killing, including the alleged motive for the crime, were not immediately released.

Police forces at the scene of the alleged murder of a 46-year-old woman from Nof Hagalil, near the Yarden Haharari section of the Jordan River, on August 7, 2021. (Israel Police)

“The rapid work of investigators in locating the suspect, and the suspicion of a murder case, led to the launch of all Northern District forces for a rapid and extensive operation to locate the victim’s body,” Northern District chief Shimon Lavi said at the time.

Lavi said the case proved the police’s “full commitment to solving crime in the Arab community, using all means at our disposal.”

Police have been accused of neglecting Israel’s Arab society, as violence and crime continue to surge.

Commander Shimon Lavi speaks during an exchange ceremony of the North District Police Command, on July 9, 2019. (Flash90)

Violent crime has risen to record levels in Arab communities in recent years, with 78 Arab Israeli citizens killed in apparent homicides since 2021 began, according to a tally by the Abraham Initiatives nonprofit. Another 15 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli territory.

Thirteen of those killed in violent incidents this year were women, the nonprofit said.

Last year, 96 Arab Israelis were killed in communal violence.

Authorities have vowed to devote more resources to battling crime in Arab locales, after a series of recent shootings triggered the online #Arab_Lives_Matter campaign to protest the alleged lack of police action.

In July, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said that violence and crime in Arab Israeli communities was a “national calamity,” as he met with senior government and police officials to formulate a national plan to tackle the issue.

read more:
comments
Never miss breaking news on Israel
Get notifications to stay updated
You're subscribed