Gil Ofarim: Lawyer raises allegations against judges in anti-Semitism trial

  Gil Ofarim's anti-Semitism allegations made in the video are making waves. Gil Ofarim's anti-Semitism allegations made in the video are making waves. Image: dpa / Tobias Hase

The Gil Ofarim case is entering the next round: the musician gets two star lawyers to assist him in the defamation process and launches an all-out attack. The allegations made by his defenders against Leipzig justice raise, weigh heavily.

Gil Ofarim's video sparked heated anti-Semitism debates

In March 2022, the Leipzig public prosecutor charged the musician Gil Ofarim with defamation and false accusations. The 40-year-old had earlier, last October, made allegations of anti-Semitism against a Leipzig hotel in a video. The video then went viral – and was the starting signal for public anti-Semitism debates.

According to the public prosecutor's office, however, the incident did not happen as Ofarim had described.

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The musician is now defending himself against the charges – and with the help of his lawyers he is making serious allegations against a Munich judge. According to information from the ' picture ' Ofarim is now relying on the legal assistance of the Munich star lawyers Dr. Alexander Stevens and Dr. Alexander Betz. He brings two well-known defenders to his side: Both are experts in the field of defense and criminal law.

They are now launching an all-out attack – and are rejecting both the second criminal division of the Leipzig Regional Court and the judges. The reason: bias.

Lawyers question the impartiality of the judge

Compared to 'Bild', Stevens justified the procedure with 'considerable doubts about the impartiality' of the Leipzig judiciary. ' Not because of the indictment itself, but because of the handling of the sensitive case by the Leipzig judiciary,' the lawyer is quoted as saying. Stevens goes on to say: 'In any case, the defense today felt compelled to reject the presiding judge because of bias.'

The allegations that Ofarim's lawyers raise against a judge weigh heavily: In a preliminary talk he had already 'frankly' stated that he himself had difficulty imagining the course of events alleged by Mr Ofarim. 'Because, as is well known, there is no significant problem with anti-Semitism in Leipzig,' says the lawyer, repeating the judge's alleged statements before the trial.

A 'show trial'? Lawyers question jurisdiction of court

In addition to the bias concerns, Stevens expresses doubts about the jurisdiction of the grand criminal division. This is 'usually responsible for negotiating the most serious charges such as brutal robbery or rape'.

  Gil Ofarim must now answer in court for his allegations. Gil Ofarim must now answer in court for his allegations. Image: dpa / Gerald Matzka

He describes the hearing before that court as inappropriate and warns of an impending 'show trial'. Alexander Stevens argues that there is 'weak justification' for hearing his client's case there because of his prominence and 'partly international media coverage'.