Police arrest 3 suspected of scamming foreign Arab investors out of millions
Suspects worked as managers at an investment firm in Karmiel that police suspect had ties to a criminal organization
Three men from northern Israel were arrested Tuesday on suspicion that they defrauded thousands of foreign investors out of millions, police said.
The suspects, all residents of Arab towns in northern Israel between the ages of 28 and 35, deliberately targeted investors from Arab countries, according to a statement by police.
The suspects worked as managers at an investment firm in the northern, predominantly Jewish town of Karmiel. Police suspect the company has ties to a criminal organization operating in the area.
Two other employees in the investment firm aged 40 and 28 were detained and taken for questioning. The exact suspicions against them were not immediately clear.
The suspects were arrested on Tuesday morning following a covert investigation by the Lahav 433 unit, which is responsible for investigating complex cybercrimes. They are suspected of money laundering, fraudulently receiving items, filing false business documents, tax offenses, providing material aid for a criminal offense, conspiracy to commit fraud, and violating computer laws.
Police said the men would be brought for a remand hearing at the Rishon Lezion Magistrate’s Court.
According to the ongoing investigation, the suspects would contact Arab investors and offer them lucrative opportunities to invest in Israel while producing fake data and false information about their activities.
The thousands of investors only realized they had been scammed when they tried to collect their earnings, police said.
Officers said they seized several vehicles found at the suspects’ homes and froze their bank accounts.
The police statement did not specify which Arab countries were targeted by suspects.
Israel has normalized relations with Egypt, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco. Investment from other Arab countries is made through foreign companies.