Israeli authorities announced on February 11 that they had uncovered a crime group that illegally traded in advanced weapon systems.
In a joint statement, Israeli authorities said that 20 citizens, some of whom are veterans of the defense industry, were interrogated for developing, manufacturing, testing and illegally selling loitering munitions for an unnamed country in Asia.
The suspects developed loitering munitions for the foreign country in secret. In return, they received money and other benefits.
Video of the Israelis testing the loitering missiles for the Asian country
— avi scharf (@avischarf) February 11, 2021
Israel’s internal security service, Shin Bet, the Police’s International Crime Investigations Unit, the Director of Security of the Defense Establishment, and the State Attorney’s Office Economic Division all participated in the investigation.
The investigation uncovered information regarding the way the foreign country worked with the Israelis suspects. The information included technics used to blur any traces leading to the deals or the transfer of money.
“This affair illustrates the potential damage to the security of the state inherent in business deals between Israeli citizens and foreign elements in contravention of the law, including the concern that this technology could find its way to countries hostile to Israel,” the joint statement reads.
The rest of the investigation details are still classified. Israeli authorities may share more information soon. The case exposes serious security issues with Tel Aviv’s military sector.
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