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U.S. killer in Israeli prison shot dead in gunbattle

An ambulance leaves the Sharon Prison, near Raanana, central Israel, where police killed inmate Samuel Sheinbein, who had seized a guard’s weapon and shot three guards.

Associated Press

An ambulance leaves the Sharon Prison, near Raanana, central Israel, where police killed inmate Samuel Sheinbein, who had seized a guard’s weapon and shot three guards.

SHARON PRISON, Israel — Israeli special forces raided a prison Sunday after an inmate stole a gun and shot several guards, killing the notorious prisoner who was serving time for a gruesome murder in the United States.

Police identified the inmate as Samuel Sheinbein, an American who fled to Israel after murdering and dismembering a man in Maryland in 1997 and whose case sparked a high-profile row between the two allies.

Police special forces rushed to the prison in central Israel after Sheinbein stole a weapon and shot three guards, wounding two of them seriously. He then barricaded himself inside the compound where a standoff ensued, with counterterrorism units dispatched to the scene. The inmate then opened fire again, wounding three more guards, before the forces shot him dead, police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said.

Sheinbein, 34, was tried in Israel in 1999, two years after he fled to the country and successfully sought refuge from extradition, enraging Maryland authorities and briefly threatening U.S. aid to the Jewish state.

An Israeli court sentenced Sheinbein to 24 years for his slaying and dismemberment of Alfredo Enrique Tello Jr., 19. Sheinbein was 17 at the time of the killing and could have faced a life sentence in Maryland. His extradition to Maryland was blocked after a yearlong battle between Israel and the United States over an Israeli law that prohibited the extradition of Israeli citizens to foreign countries.

Sheinbein's father was born in Israel and Sheinbein qualified for Israeli citizenship.

Israel later changed its laws to allow the extradition of Israeli citizens on condition that they are returned to Israel to serve any sentence imposed.

U.S. killer in Israeli prison shot dead in gunbattle 02/23/14 [Last modified: Sunday, February 23, 2014 10:14pm]

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