The Nazareth District Court on Wednesday convicted Hussein Yussuf Hasin Halifa of murdering Shelly Dadon and sentenced him to life in prison.
The court also ordered him to pay NIS 258,000 as a fine.
In November 2014, the families of Shelly Dadon and of Halifa had a physical and verbal altercation in the Nazareth District Court.
The sides were separated by court security after calls to the suspect’s father that he had “raised a murderer” were made, and he was evacuated to hospital because he felt ill.
The lawyers for Israeli Arab Halifa said he admitted to the murder of 19-year-old Dadon under duress that included abuse and sleep deprivation, but the court ultimately convicted him anyway.
Dadon was killed on May 1, 2014 after she disappeared while on her way to a job interview in Migdal Ha’emek. On June 16 the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) arrested Halifa, a taxi driver from Ibillin in the Galilee.
The Shin Bet says that Halifa picked up Dadon on the way to the interview and took her to a deserted parking lot, where he stabbed her to death, leaving wounds across her entire body.
He then washed his taxi in a failed attempt to get rid of physical evidence linking him to the crime, and ditched Dadon’s wallet in the Arab village of Beit Zarzir, where it was found by local youths.
Since Dadon was killed, the police and the Shin Bet said it was most likely a terrorist attack, even as it eventually was determined to most likely have been criminal in nature, with no apparent nationalistic motive.
After the killing, relatives of Dadon and residents of her hometown of Afula held protests in the city, calling on the police to find the killer and also for Israel to end the practice of releasing convicted murderers in agreements with the Palestinians.