An investigator from the Israel Police’s Lahav 433 was arrested on suspicion of providing inside information to crime syndicates, the Justice Ministry’s Police Investigations Department (PID) said on Tuesday.
The officer, a sergeant, is suspected of passing information without authority to do so, and passing information to criminal elements. The covert investigation that preceded the arrest was conducted based on information provided by the police, the PID said.
According to the police, an officer noticed suspicious activity in the police’s internal computer systems and reported it to his superiors. The police itself investigated the report, and then passed its findings to the PID.
The officer, who had been serving on the police force for four months, is from the North, the police said. The northern town in question was reported by KAN as being the Druze town Daliat al-Carmel. KAN also reported that the officer had previously served in the IDF’s signal intelligence-collecting Unit 8200, and that his actions had only become known to the police a few days before his arrest.
One of the crime syndicates that the officer is suspected of passing information to is the Abu Latif family, based in the northern town of Rameh, KAN said. Abu Latif was designated by the police as one of three leading crime families in the Arab sector, in addition to the Jarushi and Hariri families.
The suspect claimed that he had accessed the internal systems because he was trying to take the initiative on an investigation he was working on, and that he had not passed on any information. Haaretz reported that he was willing to undergo a polygraph test to prove his innocence.
The officer was brought before the Rishon Lezion Magistrate Court on Wednesday morning, ,and his custody was extended for an additional five days.
The court placed a gag order on the officer’s identity and on any images of him.
Known as the “Israeli FBI,” Lahav 433 is the police unit tasked with investigating national crimes and corruption. The extent of the damage caused by the leaked information is unclear.