Draft Human Rights Alert’s 2012 State of Israel UPR Submission: The electronic record systems of the courts of the State of Israel and integrity of the justice system
Allegations: Conditions, now prevailing in the electronic records of the courts of the State of Israel, amount to violation of any article of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, where integrity of the courts and the justice system is a prerequisite. Such violations undermine the rule of law. Likewise, such conditions are claimed as violations of international treaties and conventions, to which the State of Israel is a party, including, but not limited to the Hague Convention (1961).
Evidence: Human Rights Alert’s (NGO) Submission is narrowly focused on analysis of the electronic record systems in national courts (Supreme Court, district courts, detainees courts [Batey Din le- Mishmoret Muhzakim]). In particular, public access to court records and integrity of the records, which are made accessible to the public, are examined.
The analysis is based on public court records and attempts to access court records and ascertain their integrity in practice, and uses methods inspired by data-mining and zero-knowledge proofs; on consultations with Israeli law and computing experts as well as religious leaders; on media reports, and on attempts to obtain relevant public information or solicit investigation/ corrective actions by relevant national agencies.
In 2001-3, critical events took place relative to integrity of the Supreme Court’s electronic records. Numerous case files are missing altogether, a cardinal sign of judicial corruption, according to UN reports on Strengthening Judicial Integrity. Additionally, a large number of records are falsified. Since then, the Supreme Court's electronic records have been published online unsigned and uncertified, ‘subject to editing and phrasing changes.’ The 2010 Ombudsman’s report (60b) noted various anomalies in development and implementation of the systems, including compromised security.
Today, the Supreme Court refuses to certify its own decisions. An unsigned, undated apostille certification procedure, which is published online by the Judicial Authority, is opined as fraud, intended to simulate compliance with the Hague Convention (1961).*
In response to Freedom of Information request, the Judicial Authority claimed that there was no instructional documentation for the systems, and other requests, pertaining to the ultimate administrative authority for the servers and the authorization of the online publication of the false apostille procedure, are still pending.
Conclusions: Precipitous deterioration in integrity of the electronic records of the courts of the State of Israel is documented over the past decade in conjunction with implementation of false new online public access and/or case management systems (CMSs) in the courts. Prevailing conditions should be deemed a failure of the legal profession, which undermines the integrity of the justice system, and with it – civil society and socioeconomic development.
Recommendations: Proposed solutions would have to draw upon civil society agents outside the legal profession, most likely – computing experts and religious leaders. Truth and reconciliation commission may also be required, for the resolution of the disposition of the large number of court records from the past decade, which are opined as fraud or are missing, and for investigation, whether judges/justices and/or senior officers of the Ministry of Justice of the State of Israel have been involved in wholesale violations of their oaths of office.
The State of Israel is not alone in employing false electronic record systems in the courts to simulate the rule of law.
* For definition of “Simulated Court Records” [Ketav Bei Din le-Mar’it Ayin], “Simulated Litigation” [Halich le-Mar’it Ayin], see Online Appendix: Table of Contents, Submission, Overview Table, Links.http://www.scribd.com/doc/82927700/