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Israeli Police Criminal Probe into Drone-Maker Bombing Artsakh Target

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#1 onjig



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Posted 19 November 2017 - 02:10 PM

Israeli Police Launches Criminal Probe into Drone-Maker Suspected of Bombing Artsakh Targets



An Orbiter drone being launched

The Israeli police announced Tuesday that it has opened a criminal investigation in a drone manufacturer that allegedly live tested a suicide drone on Artsakh targets on the orders of Azerbaijan earlier this year.

The Times of Israel reported  that a police statement confirmed that the Israeli Aeronautics Defense System Ltd. was the target of the criminal investigation.

“An investigation is ongoing against Aeronautics Defense Systems Ltd. in regards to a deal with a ‘significant customer,’” police said in a statement Tuesday.

A gag order issued by an Israeli court on Monday to limit the flow of information about the case prompted the news to come out. The police’s ability to identify the “significant customer” is among the restrictions imposed by the gag order.

The Israel Police’s Unit of International Crime Investigations, known by its Hebrew acronym, Yahbal, is leading the investigation, according to Times of Israel.

In August, the Israeli defense ministry’s Defense Export Controls Agency halted the sales license of Aeronautics Defense System after an investigation was launched on a complaint that company officials were ordered by Azerbaijan to carry out a live test on Artsakh targets of its Orbiter 1K model UAV, which can be outfitted with a 2.2 to 4.4-pound explosive load and flown on “suicide missions.”

The Hay Zinvor news outlet quoted Colonel Armen Gyozalian of the Artsakh army as confirming that two people were lightly wounded in an attack on Artsakh targets on July 7.

Aeronautics, which was poised to make a $20 million deal with the “significant customer” said it would “fully cooperate with any examination on any issue and would work to the best of its capabilities so the investigation will be as swift as possible.”

The gag rule revealed that the police investigation has been underway since September 4 against Aeronautics, which, according to Times of Israel, has had dealing with the Myanmar military junta, which is accused of ethnic cleansing for its treatment of the country’s Muslim Rohingya minority.


The live test against Artsakh targets that is the focus of the investigation would be illegal under Israeli law. “It would require a seldom-granted permit to carry out demonstrations against real targets. In this case, Aeronautics Defense Systems would be even less likely to receive such a permit, as Israel does not consider Armenia to be an enemy state,” according to Times of Israel.

During a press conference in Los Angeles on Monday, Armenia’s Defense Minister Vigen Sargsyan said that Armenia was concerned with any country selling weapons to Azerbaijan, because, according to the minister, Azerbaijan’s policies and its lack of respect for human rights did not guarantee that the country would utilize the weapons according to international norms and regulations.

Azerbaijan president Ilham Aliyev announced that last year that his country had purchased $5 billion in weapons and military equipment from Israel.



#2 Yervant1


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Posted 03 January 2018 - 11:28 AM

Jan 2 2018
  • Following Police Investigation, Israeli Drone Maker Facing Hurdles in the U.S.
According to past media reports, Israel-based Aeronautics had allegedly carried out a live demonstration of one of its suicide drones on an Armenian army post
Amir Kurz 19:0802.01.18
Currently under police investigation in Israel, Israeli drone maker Aeronautics Ltd. is facing regulatory obstacles in the U.S., according to several persons familiar with the matter who spoke on conditions of anonymity. Due to the ongoing investigation, U.S. authorities did not issue approvals Aeronautics needs to complete the acquisition of San Diego, California-based Chassis Plans Inc., these people said. Representatives of U.S.-based vendors also voiced concerns regarding their ability to get the permits required to continue selling components to the Israeli company, these people further noted.   


Israeli police is investigating a deal Aeronautics signed with a non-Israeli client. An Israeli court has issued a sweeping gag order on all details pertaining to the investigation, which has been underway since September. According to past media reports, Aeronautics had allegedly carried out a live demonstration of one of its suicide drones on an Armenian army post at the request of the Azerbaijani army. The Azerbaijani army, was responsible for 20% of Aeronautics’ sales in 2016, according to the company’s filing.
CAL046685_l.jpg Aeronautics CEO Amos Matan. Photo: PR


On Sunday, Aeronautics announced in a Tel Aviv Stock Exchange filing it is pushing back the finalization of the deal to acquire Chassis Plans.



In September, the company announced it had signed a $6 million deal to acquire the U.S.-based manufacturer of computer systems for military and industrial use. The company noted the deal is expected to close by the end of November, further noting that if required approvals are not obtained by year’s end, both sides will be allowed to call off the deal. On Friday, the companies amended the original agreement, pushing the deal's deadline to the end of May, according to the announcement made by Aeronautics on Sunday.

“the terms for the completion of the deal have yet to mature,” an Aeronautics spokesman said in reply to a request for comment. “The company continues to work to complete the deal and obtain all required permits. Aeronautics continues its operations, even reporting recently signed deals,” he further noted.



After listing on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange in June, Aeronautics has seen its stock price plunge 40%. The company intended to utilize the acquisition of Chassis Plans to get more deals in Israel, unlocking the use of U.S.-Israel military aid funds, according to the company’s September announcement. In a prospectus filed to the Tel Aviv Exchange, the company noted it sees expansion in the U.S. as strategic.

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