Police arrest 3 for planting bomb on car of rival crime boss in Rehovot

February 23, 2014 22:35

Central District detectives detain three men on Sunday who they said planted a bomb in the car of a rival in the city back in July.

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Car explosion scene in Rehovot, December 2013

Explosion in Rehovot 2 370. (photo credit: Courtesy Ihud Hazala)

In the latest chapter of the ongoing, bloody gang war in Rehovot, Central District detectives arrested three men on Sunday they said planted a bomb in the car of a rival in the city back in July.

The three men, Ben Tzaban, 26, Shai Allon, 26, and Ayal Nigar, 28, were all ordered held until March 3rd by the Rishon Letzion Magistrate’s Court on Sunday, on suspicion of attempted murder and conspiracy to commit a crime. Police had asked the two men be kept in custody for 15 days.

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The case goes back to July 25th, when a bomb was found affixed to a car belonging to Amos and Ophir Lavi, who police say run a gang that dominates organized crime in the Shfela subdistrict. The Lavi brothers are allied with mobster Shalom Domrani’s Ashkelon-based crime family, and have been waging a war with the three suspects and their associates for the past few years.

The three men arrested on Sunday are well-known to the Israel Police and are reputedly allied with Domrani’s bitter enemy, Beni Shlomo, a former top associate of the southern crime boss who now runs his own rival organization.

Shlomo remains the main suspect in the car bombs that targeted Domrani’s people in late 2013, and is based out of Moshav Heletz, where bombing suspect Ayal Nigar also lives.

In the weeks and months after the bombing police said they gathered evidence and built their case against the three suspects, deciding to finally arrest them this week.

Also on Sunday, police in Tel Aviv’s Yarkon subdistrict announced the arrest of a 40-year-old man suspected of placing a bomb on a parked car in the city, that caused damage to the vehicle but no injuries.

Police said that they believed that the background to the incident was a business dispute between two relatives.

The man who was arrested is known to police for a series of violent crime convictions, including the use of explosives.

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