Engineer arrested for approving faulty safe zones

Police say bomb shelters in Ashkelon - designed to protect residents from rocket attacks - were substandard.

March 9, 2012 12:13
1 minute read.
A girl stands inside a bomb shelter in Ashkelon

A girl stands inside a bomb shelter in Ashkelon 311 (R). (photo credit: Ronen Zvulun / Reuters)


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Police arrested an engineer with ties to the IDF on Friday on suspicions that he approved bomb shelters in the South that do not meet official standards in exchange for cash.

Investigations carried out within the Home Front Command - which employed the engineer - along with the military police implicated the man, whose identity was withheld on Friday, with approving permits for contractors building high rises in the southern Mediterranean city of Ashkelon.

Those contractors attempted to save money by cutting corners in the construction of safe houses, in an area where rocket attacks from Gaza occur frequently.

Police also detained a number of the contractors on Thursday, releasing them later to house arrest.

The engineer is suspected of bribery, fraud, and violating public trust. Police say he approved safe zones - areas designed to protect inhabitants from rocket attacks - in new buildings built in Ashkelon.

Police checks found the zones did not stand up to safety regulations set by the Home Front Command. 

One suspect, a manager in the construction project, appeared before a Petah Tikva Magistrate's Court on Friday morning.

The investigation first began in the Military Police, and was then joined by the national National Crimes Unit of the Israel Police.

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