Police find intel officer who died mysteriously wasn’t killed by ‘a deliberate act’

Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent.

A police review of the military’s probe into the mysterious death of a likely-to-be-indicted Military Intelligence officer last year determines he was not killed by “a deliberate act.”

The officer, who was being held in jail under accusations of grave security offenses, and whose name remains barred from publication over a year after his death, was found dead in his cell on May 16, 2021. There was no clear sign of death, and an autopsy in Israel, as well as a blood test at a specialized forensic laboratory in the United States, were inconclusive.

In January, the Israel Defense Forces allowed the police to review its internal investigations.

The police team found “there is no indication that the officer’s death was caused as a result of a deliberate act by any source,” according to a statement published by the IDF.

The statement says the police team found that the IDF “conducted all the investigative actions necessary,” but also recommended to “perform investigative actions in a number of other aspects.”

The officer’s family and lawyer were updated on the police findings, the IDF says.

The officer, who served in a Military Intelligence technology unit, had not yet been indicted when he died, but would have been charged with nearly two dozen separate offenses and faced at least a 10-year prison sentence.

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