The state witness in the trial over the 2009 deadly shooting rampage at a Tel Aviv gay youth centre disappeared from his safe house on Thursday, without coordinating his exit with police.

The security guards charged with his safekeeping had little information, unable to inform police of when or where he went. Large security forces were deployed in the area to search for him.

The witness was recently relocated to this current apartment after Channel 10 revealed to the public where he was being held.

The entire case rests on his testimony, and he has been classified by police as a “fragile” component that must be kept from harm. He is meant to be under surveillance 24 hours a day.

Police are already furious at the witness’s behaviour: He had been asked to keep a low profile, but instead arranged meetings in the safe house, held telephone conversations, and used Facebook. Police now fear that he will be used by external figures interested in getting his to reverse his testimony.

Details of the 4-year-old unsolved case unfolded earlier this month, when police revealed that they had arrested three suspects allegedly involved in the deadly attack. Two people were killed in the shooting, Liz Trubeshi, 16, and youth counsellor Nir Katz, 27.

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