Three Israelis indicted in large smuggling ring for Hamas

A long joint investigation of Israel Police, Shin Bet, the Israel Defense Forces, the Defense Ministry, and the Tax Authority has rolled up a 25-member smuggling ring to the Gaza Strip, charging three Israelis and a fourth man with assisting an enemy in time of war, terror financing, fraudulent receipt of an item under aggravated circumstances, money-laundering, tax offenses and other crimes. The defendants are accused of providing $30 million worth of raw materials, including large quantities of iron, directly to Hamas for the manufacture of rockets, missiles and the construction of terror tunnels, as well as generators, and electrical equipment.

The charges are related to five previous indictments against Palestinians and the Palestinian Authority.

Thousands of tons of smuggled goods were trucked into Gaza Strip through the Kerem Shalom crossing which  the IDF keeps open for the passage of basic goods – even during last summer’s war operation.

They were addressed to the Hamas purchasing agent Osama Zuarov whom Israel has blacklisted as a trading connection. The Israelis brought before the Beersheba District court Monday were named as Mica Peretz.50 a businessman from Moshav Mictachim in the Eshkol District outside the Gaza Strip, Yehoram Alon of Tel Aviv, a Palestinian Nagi Zuareb of Shehade and a fourth businessman whose name was withheld by a gag order.

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