IDF Indicts Top General Ofek Buchris For Rape

The IDF legal division on Thursday filed an indictment against Brig. Gen. Ofer Buchris for three counts of rape and 13 counts of other sex crimes between July 2012 and January 2013, bringing the saga to a decisive point which has captivated the country for 5 months.

According to the indictment, Buchris perpetrated all three counts of rape along with seven other sex crimes against A, a low-ranking soldier serving under him, and another six sex crimes against L, an officer working for him.

The highly graphic indictment describes Buchris forcing A to have sexual relations with him in multiple positions as well as to perform sexual acts on him.

Some of the repeat incidents are described over a period of years, but the indictment specifically identifies Buchris as having raped A on April 1, 2011 at a weekend-rental home at Bnai Yehuda Village near Katzrin in the North.

A also accused Buchris of touching and caressing her without her consent all over her body specifically in April 2011 in general.

Some of the other specific details revealed include Buchris sending A text messages about his missing her, his kissing her until another officer walked into the room and his touching her breasts and other parts of her body on drives while his driver was present.

The indictment does not describe A as resisting, but rather as freezing up and neither responding nor cooperating.

In one instance, A told Buchris that she was having her period and so he refrained from touching her in her groin area, but touched her on the rest of her body.

In another instance, A warned Buchris that someone might walk into the room, that he should stop and that he should leave the door open.

L resisted far more according to the indictment.

On March 6, 2012, Buchris pinned L to the wall and started caressing her breasts, with L telling him “No, no, this is forbidden,” and eventually putting her hands up between their bodies.

Once L put up this resistance, Buchris stopped and the two of them conducted the meeting that had been scheduled.

Between January and June 2012, Buchris stripped in front of L lying in bed with her until L left the room not wanting to have sexual relations with him.

In several other instances, Buchris kissed and touched L against her will with L eventually leaving the area so that he would stop.

In one instance he asked her to go up to the bedroom to have sexual relations with him and she said “that is not happening.”

On September 9, 2013, L had a small car crash with Buchris’ car. He suggested her could help her with the incident, but again tried to touch her against her will, with her leaving and saying she did not need any more help.

All of the incidents other than the 2013 incident occurred when he was a Colonel and commander of the Golani Brigade, with the last incident occurring when he had been promoted to his current rank of Brigadier General.

On June 21, Buchris held a crucial pre-indictment hearing with the IDF’s top lawyer, Brig. Gen. Sharon Afek and his lawyer, IDF Public Defender Col. (res.) Asher Halperin.

At a hearing of only a few hours, Halperin requested to present additional evidence to Afek who allowed additional day of hearings.

Buchris had previously been accused of five incidents of rape against his main accuser and of sexual harassment against a second accuser.

The allegations, which broke in early March, have already cost him a promotion to be head of IDF operations within the operations directorate and have halted the career of an officer who many saw as a future IDF chief-of-staff.

Reports indicated before the hearing that Afek was leaning toward indicting him, though reports have varied on how serious the charges might be and no one has reported a smoking gun as in other rape cases.

In the gamut of dramatic moments in the case, from leaks, to lie detector tests to a confrontation between Buchris and his accusers, part of the key to the case is that his main accuser has held up under extreme scrutiny and been backed by other witnesses as well as that Buchris has not successfully pinned any possible false motivation on his accuser.

In mid-March, new evidence reported by Channel 10 and a battle of lie detector tests which seemed to go against Buchris appeared to move the IDF legal division closer to an indictment.

That new evidence reportedly included objective circumstantial evidence tending to confirm at least one of the five incidents of rape which Buchris is accused of.

In addition, the lawyers for the two women said at the time that IDF lawyers, including top military prosecutor Col. Sharon Zigagi, told them that the lie detector tests also showed that Buchris was not telling the entire truth in denying the complaints against him.

Halperin has slammed the leaks to the media as manipulative and doing injustice to Buchris throughout the saga.

2 replies
  1. Joe Levin
    Joe Levin says:

    תא”ל אופק בוכריס שהואשם היום (חמישי) בשורת עבירות מין חמורות כינס מסיבת עיתונאים מחוץ לביתו במצפה נטופה שבגליל, וטען כי כל המיוחס לו בכתב האישום לא התרחש מעולם.

    “קבלתי בתדהמה את החלטת הפצ”ר להגיש כתב אישום. העניין כולו יתברר בבית הדין. כל מי שעיין בחומר החקירה יודע שאין שחר להאשמות. כרגע יש נייר שאומר שעשיתי כך וכך וזה שטר שצריך לפרוע אותו”, אמר בוכריס.

    הוא הבהיר, “זהו קרב חיי ואנצח בו. לא היו דברים מעולם, לא היה ולא נברא. כתב האישום הוא שטר שיצטרכו לפרוע אותו. להאשמות הללו אין שחר. אני בטוח שכשהעניין יובא לבית הדין בהליך פומבי, האמת תצא לאור. אני מודה לתומכי, לחברי ולכל מי שעודדו אותנו ושותפים לאורך כל הדרך”.

    כאמור, הפרקליטות הצבאית הודיעה אחר הצהריים כי החליטה להאשים אותו את תא”ל בוכריס באונס ובמעשה סדום.

    מדובר בקצין ולוחם עתיר זכויות, הפרקליט הצבאי הראשי מסר כי ההחלטה להעמידו לדין התקבלה בלב כבד.

    “במסגרת חקירה יסודית, עלו ראיות לכאורה לכך שהקצין ביצע מספר עבירות מין חמורות כלפי חיילת זוטרה בשירות חובה, וכלפי קצינה, בעת שהשתיים שירתו תחת פיקודו כמפקד חטיבת גולני. על כן, החליט הפצ”ר על הגשת כתב האישום”, נמסר מדובר צה”ל.

    ההחלטה להגיש כתב אישום התקבלה לאחר שהפצ”ר שוכנע שעדות שתי המתלוננות אמינה ולא נמצא בהן מניע זר.

    נציין כי עם פתיחת החקירה עוכבה כניסתו של בוכריס לתפקיד ראש אגף המבצעים, ולאחר מספר שבועות בוטל מינויו לתפקיד. מקורביו טענו מראשית הפרשה כי מדובר בעלילה. גם חיילות וקצינות ששירתו בעבר תחת פיקודו טענו כי בוכריס מעולם לא נהג כמטריד סדרתי.

  2. Joe Levin
    Joe Levin says:

    IDF General Ofek Buchris, who was indicted today for serious sex crimes, held a news conference outside his home today in northern Israel, where he asserted that the accusations against him are baseless.

    “I was shocked to hear of the indictment,” Buchris said. “All will become clear in court. Anybody who looks at the investigative materials can see that the accusations are baseless[…] the truth will come to light. I thank all my friends and supporters who are with us all along the way.”

    It will be remembered that the IDF prosecution has indicted Buchris for rape and sodomy. The prosecution announced that the decision to indict Buchris, a highly-decorated officer, was made with a heavy heart.

    “In the course of an extensive investigation, evidence was found that would indicate that Buchris committed severe sex offenses against a female minor soldier, and a female officer, during the period they served under his command as Commander of the Golani Brigade. In this context it was decided to press charges,” the military prosecution said.

    The decision for an indictment was made after the prosecution was convinced that the two female claimants did not have any ulterior motive.

    The investigation led, at first, to a delay in Buchris’ appointment to the position of Chief Operations Officer, and several weeks later his appointment to the position was cancelled altogether. Those close to Buchris have asserted since the beginning of the episode that a plot is afoot against Buchris. In addition, female soldiers who served under Buchris in the past have said that Buchris was never known to engage in sexual harassment.

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