Israel Police announced the indictment of several suspects who were arrested for a plot to use a drone with an explosive payload to assassinate an unknown individual in Jaffa as part of a dispute between criminal organizations.
Authorities were initially alerted to the plot in mid-December when an international citizen from the Philippines noticed a drone with an object underneath, with its lights on, sitting on top of a wall.
The Israel Police Bomb Disposal Unit assessed the situation and suspected the drone was carrying an explosive that could be remotely initiated. A subsequent investigation, including an undercover operation, led to the men’s arrest.
The investigation revealed that the drone was meant to assassinate an individual from another gang as part of a “prison battle.” A raid at a home and a nearby area in Jaffa revealed two extra drones, cell phones, and explosives.
This case highlights the continued evolution of the use of drones by individuals to conduct criminal activity. Similar tactics are being used in places such as Mexico, where rival cartels are using drones for surveillance, delivery of narcotics across the border, and assassinating rival cartel members.