Son of Israeli consul who allegedly ran over Fla. officer on purpose won’t be shielded by diplomatic immunity
The suspect was swerving in between cars on a motorcycle when an officer standing on the side of the road told him to pull over; instead, he sped up and ran over the officer’s leg
By Jessica Schladebeck
New York Daily News
SUNNY ISLES — The teenage son of an Israeli diplomat accused of “intentionally” running over a Florida police officer will not be able to dodge charges by claiming diplomatic immunity, officials said Thursday.
The U.S. Department of State confirmed that while his father, Eli Gil, serves as consul for the administration at the Israeli Consulate in Miami, that does not offer 19-year-old Avraham Gil any sort of protection.
He’s facing charges including a first-degree felony count of aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer, and resisting an officer with violence, in connection to a confrontation with Sunny Isles Beach Lt. Ruben Zamora over the weekend.
“We can confirm that, as the dependent of an Israeli consular officer, the concerned individual is not entitled to civil or criminal immunity,” a State Department spokesperson told Local 10.
Zamora was conducting a traffic stop Sunday afternoon when he spotted Gil weaving through cars on Collins Avenue, a major roadway running parallel to the Atlantic Ocean, on a 2018 black Suzuki motorcycle. According to a police report obtained by the Miami Herald, Zamora repeatedly called out for Gil to stop. Instead, he raced forward and “intentionally” ran over the officer, who in turn, grabbed the teen “with both of his hands and redirected him towards the ground to stop him,” per the report.
In wake of the incident, Zamora was hospitalized with an “incapacitating” injury to his left leg. He has still not returned to work.
“It should be noted that Avraham spontaneously uttered that he was sorry and that he was just driving in between vehicles to cut in front of the line because he hates waiting behind traffic,” according to the report.
Gil was also driving without a valid license and his motorcycle did not have a license plate at the time, police said.
During a hearing in county court earlier this week, Gil’s attorneys argued that, based on his father’s diplomatic status, Miami-Dade law does not apply to him and therefore all charges against him should be dropped.
According to the U.S. Department of State, consular immunity provides limited protections to consular officers, shielding them from criminal prosecution in connection with their official duties. It’s a far cry from the immunity offered to diplomatic agents, who generally cannot be prosecuted by their host nation at all. The agency noted that “absent a bilateral agreement, the family members of consular officers enjoy no personal inviolability and no jurisdictional immunity of any kind.”