Fears the 'Israeli Madeleine McCann' has been killed by her own mother and grandfather
By DAILY MAIL REPORTER
27 August 2008
Grandfather Is Convicted of 2008 Murder of Child in Israel
By ISABEL KERSHNER
Published: May 20, 2011
JERUSALEM — The case of a grisly 2008 killing of a 4-year-old girl ended this week with an Israeli court finding the girl’s paternal grandfather guilty of her murder. The court also convicted the girl’s mother of soliciting the killing.
The verdicts, handed down Thursday, reopened a disturbing chapter that gripped the country at the time and prompted agonized soul-searching about how the child could have been mistreated over an extended period and then disappear.
Even now, after the convictions, questions remain about how the girl, Rose Pisam, died.
The case exposed an unusual web of familial relations spanning continents that left the child vulnerable and without a social safety net. Rose was born in France to Marie Pisam and her husband, Benjamin, who was raised in France but had an Israeli father.
During a visit to Israel a few years ago Ms. Pisam began an affair with her husband’s father, Ronny Ron, and stayed while Benjamin returned to France with Rose, then a baby. But Rose often ended up in the care of welfare authorities, and her mother fought successfully to bring her to Israel. However, Ms. Pisam, who had two daughters with Mr. Ron, found herself unable to cope with Rose, who was said to suffer from severe emotional and behavioral problems.
Mr. Ron’s mother, who had helped care for Rose, reported her missing in the summer of 2008 after not seeing the child for months, raising the alarm. Mr. Ron eventually told the police that he had hit Rose while riding with her in the car, and that when he saw that she had stopped moving he placed her in a suitcase, which he then dumped in Tel Aviv’s Yarkon River.
In September 2008, after a search followed closely by the public, police divers were filmed by television cameras pulling that bag out of the murky water.
The judges ruled that Ms. Pisam repeatedly urged Mr. Ron to get rid of Rose permanently, putting her demands in writing. They also determined that the killing was planned, pointing as evidence to the large bag that Mr. Ron had prepared to hold her body.
In a summary of the verdict read out in court, the judges doubted Mr. Ron’s account that Rose had died after he struck her. It also remains unclear whether Rose was dead when she was thrown into the river.
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