Israeli Killed In Italian Boat Disaster Was A Mossad Agent, 10 Intel Agents Rushed Back To Israel

The capsized boat in Italy's Lake Maggiore. (Italian Fire and Rescue Services)

The Israeli man who drowned to death in Italy’s Lake Maggiore on Sunday in a boat accident was named as former Mossad official Erez Shimoni, z’l, on Wednesday.

Another 10 Israeli intelligence agents who survived the accident were quickly evacuated from the country and flown back to Israel on an emergency military flight on Monday morning.

The other survivors were Italian secret intelligence agents who were also quickly evacuated from emergency rooms and hotels and “disappeared without a trace” in an attempt to keep their identities from being exposed.

Initial media reports said that the gathering was a joint cruise of Israel and Italian intelligence colleagues who had gathered to celebrate a birthday but later reports said it was actually a high-level intelligence meeting.

Italian media reports say that Italy is considering launching a criminal investigation in the wake of the disaster, with the boat’s captain, whose wife was one of the four fatalities, suspected of causing death by negligence. The boat, which was designed for 15 people, was carrying 23 people, and unlike the other boats in the sea at the time, did not return to the shore when stormy weather began about two hours prior to the accident.

According to Italian media reports, Shimoni, z’l, one of the four people who lost their lives in the disaster, was the first to fall into the lake when the boat overturned. Two Italian intelligence officers and the captain’s Russian wife also lost their lives. The remaining passengers managed to swim to the shore and were rescued.

Shimoni, z’l, in his 50s, was considered a genius in his work and was highly respected in his field. His body was flown to Israel on Wednesday morning for burial.

A statement from the Mossad on Wednesday confirmed that the victim was a member of the Mossad but “due to his service in the organization, it’s not possible to elaborate on his work.”

“The Mossad lost a dear friend, a dedicated and professional worker who dedicated his life to Israel’s security, even after his retirement. The Mossad mourns the loss and shares in the family’s sorrow.”

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)


  1. Dodgy story. High level Intelligence meeting and 4 people die suddenly…
    And when you check the weather history on Lake Maggiore you will see that on Sunday it wasn’t even bad weather…

  2. @simplyshimon
    and more than that, why couldn’t this guy in his fifties swim like the others?
    I would assume that an intelligence officer must have some sort of basic life saving skills….

  3. @pure yiddishkeit
    Most capsized boat fatalities are from passenger being struck from boat when overturns or when jettisoned from boat to hard surface impact, being knocked unconscious then drowning.
    Either way I think the Russian wife had a hand in it