Fourteen months after fleeing the country, Mike Ben-Ari was arrested last week in Bosnia and Herzegovina at the request of Israel. Ben-Ari is suspected of defrauding hundreds of investors out of sums totaling hundreds of millions of shekels. The announcement of the arrest has come from the International Department of Israel's State Attorney's Office, which has officially requested Ben-Ari's extradition.
Over the years, Ben-Ari allegedly proposed that investors put money into foreign funds through a company that he owned, while showing allegedly fraudulent presentations, about 'safe' investments, which promised high returns. In practice, it is alleged that he spirited away an estimated $60 million over more than a decade.
Ben-Ari was released on bail on April 6, 2021 and fled Israel. He was allegedly assisted in escaping the country by a friend Nahum Eisenstadt who provided him with a forged passport.
Eisenstadt himself has been convicted as part of a plea bargain deal, which was opposed by Ben-Ari's investors.
Ben-Ari's case is being investigated by the Israel Securities Authority and handled by the State Attorney's Office Department of Taxation and Economics in cooperation with Israel Police and Interpol.
Mike Ben-Ari has not been convicted and he has the right of the presumption of innocence.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on July 5, 2022.
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