After a week of intensive searches including helicopters, trackers and off-road vehicles, police said Thursday night they found the body of a man they believe is 60-year-old Meir Levi of Bat Yam, reported missing by his family last week.

They said that they still have not determined the cause of death, but that the body found next to a gas station in Holon.

Levy is a well-known figure in the “gray market,” the term used for the underground banks and loan sharking operations common across Israel.

His family said this week that he had hundreds of thousands of shekels with him at the time he disappeared.

Police said that could not be confirmed, and that his disappearance could be connected to his line of work.

Last week Levy’s car was found in a vacant lot in Jaffa, with signs that it had been in an accident. There was damage to the front of the car and the air bags were deployed.

Police said they didn’t know how the accident happened or if it has any connection to Levy’s disappearance.

Earlier this week police arrested a suspect they believe was with Levy just before his disappearance. Police believe the suspect, Erez Shalmi, a former professional soccer player, may know what happened to Levy.

On Thursday police continued their search for Levy, which was being operated from a command center set up outside Holon City Hall.


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