Photo: Miriam Alster/Flash90
Police have opened a criminal investigation against an Israeli drone manufacturer that allegedly attempted to bomb the Armenian military on behalf of Azerbaijan during a demonstration of one of unmanned aerial vehicles earlier this year, the Times of Israel reported.
“An investigation is ongoing against Aeronautics Defense Systems Ltd. in regards to a deal with a significant customer,” police said in a statement Tuesday.
The Israel Police’s Unit of International Crime Investigations, known in Hebrew by its acronym Yahbal, is leading the investigation.
News of the investigation came out on Monday as an Israeli court approved a gag order for the case, limiting the information that can be published about it.
For instance, police would not identify the “significant customer.”
In a statement, Aeronautics said it would “fully cooperate with any examination on any issue and would work to the best of its capabilities so the investigation will be as swift as possible.”
The gag order shows that the company has been under investigation since at least September 4, a few weeks after the initial allegations came out regarding its live-fire demonstration against Armenia.
In late August, the Defense Ministry Defense Export Controls Agency halted Aeronautics’ export license for its Orbiter 1K model UAV to a “significant customer,” which the company reported to the Israeli stock exchange, as required by law.
Last year, Azerbaijan used another Israeli suicide drone, an Israeli Aerospace Industries Harop-model, in an attack on a bus that killed seven Armenians.