Eight people were arrested over the weekend for planning to steal weaponry from two IDF bases in the Negev to sell to organized crime groups, the Israel Police revealed on Sunday.
One IDF serviceman and three non-commissioned officers were among those arrested.
Following a two-month undercover investigation, police stopped a vehicle on a Negev highway over the weekend, and found in its trunk 10 shoulder-carried anti-tank rockets, 30 shrapnel grenades and 50 explosive bricks.
The literal war chest was on its way to being sold to a man in Dimona, who had already sold the material to criminal organizations in the country’s south.
The rockets were sold to the crime organizations for NIS 25,000 ($7,200) each, the bricks and grenades for NIS 5,000 each, suggesting the police capture was valued at NIS 650,000 ($188,000) for the crime organizations.
At least two of the soldiers arrested served in the armament branches of their base, giving them easy access to the material.
According to police, the smugglers caught over the weekend had already succeeded in selling IDF arms to crime organizations that were involved in murders throughout the country.