(photo credit: INGIMAGE / ASAP)
The CEO of a pharmaceutical company in Israel is suspected of contracting a private investigator to spy on an industry rival, in order to gain confidential information that could be used against it, Israel Police said Wednesday.
The statement by police was put out as a gag order on the case was partially lifted. The media ban still prevents publication of the name of the company, which is the Israeli branch of a major Swiss pharmaceuticals and bio-technology corporation with branches in 29 countries.
The CEO was questioned under caution on Tuesday on suspicion of fraud, and was released with conditions after questioning. The investigator he allegedly hired was also questioned on suspicion of impersonating others and fraud.
Police suspect that the investigator – whose name and company are banned from publication – contacted the rival pharmaceutical company on multiple occasions posing as officials from the company, in order to gleam confidential information from the people he contacted.
The investigation is being handled by the police in collaboration with the cybercrimes division of the State Prosecutor’s Office, police said.