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Soldier Gets Life In Prison For Rocket Attack On Arab Bus

April 18, 1985 GMT

JERUSALEM (AP) _ A three-judge court Wednesday sentenced an Israeli soldier to life in prison after convicting him of killing one Palestinian and wounding 10 others in a missile attack on a bus last October.

David Ben-Shimol, 19, was convicted of murder and attempted murder in the Oct. 28 ambush, which he staged from a shrub-covered hill near Jerusalem. The Palestinians worked in Jerusalem and were on their way to Bethlehem, where most of them lived.

Ben-Shimol, captured five days after he fired an anti-tank missile at the bus, also was convicted of throwing a hand grenade into a Palestinian coffee house in Jerusalem’s Old City on Sept. 22. Four people were wounded in that attack.

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In a statement he read in court, Ben-Shimol said he attacked the Palestinians to avenge a girlfriend who died in a bomb explosion on an Israeli bus. A family friend read the statement to The Associated Press.

The judges cut short Ben-Shimol’s statement when he started to condemn what he said was Israeli inaction against Arab terrorism. The court said it was not ready to listen to political statements.