Some two dozen Israelis — among them veterans of the defense industry — were interrogated by the Shin Bet and the Israel Police over the suspicion that they developed, manufactured, and traded illegal weapons for a foreign country.
According to a Shin Bet statement released on Thursday, during the investigation, the organization found out that the suspects were dealing with developing, manufacturing, conducting tests and illegally selling loitering missiles for a country in Asia.
The investigation also found that the suspects received operation orders from people tied to this foreign country and in return received money and other benefits.
The Shin Bet said that the investigation showed that the contact between the suspects and the foreign country was conducted covertly while trying to hide the identity of the receiver of the missiles. The investigation uncovered information regarding the way the foreign country worked with Israelis — including the use of hiding technics that will blur the traces leading to the deals and the transfer of money.
After revealing the investigation, the Shin Bet said: “This case illustrates the potential damage to the security of the country that lies within illegal deals that are conducted by Israeli citizens with foreign entities.
“It also raises fears that technologies will get to the hand of enemy countries,” it added.
The investigation material has recently been submitted for examination to the Economics Department of the State Attorney’s Office. It has yet to be determined if all the suspects will be prosecuted for the offenses.It is also unclear if the group was successful in providing a fully developed product to the unnamed country.
A gag order has been placed on other details of the investigation, including the identity of the suspects and the name of the country that ordered the weapons.