Be sure to read the update at the end of the article.
Initial reports were that Cypriot-Israeli billionaire Teddy Sagi, whose hi-tech company Cape recently acquired the ExpressVPN technology firm, narrowly escape an assassination attempt this past week in Cyprus.
Sagi acquired US-based ExpressVPN in a mammoth $936 million deal last month. Cape, controlled by Sagi and managed by Ido Ehrlichman, provides software solutions for cyber security and privacy on the Internet. Sagi was also the founder of Playtech, which he owned for 19 years before selling the gambling firm.
According to a report Sunday night by Channel 12 News, Sagi escaped the country — and his assassin — “by the skin of his teeth” after receiving a last-minute warning from Cypriot security forces.
Cypriot authorities arrested a “Russian mafia man of Azeri descent” holding a Russian passport, who the news outlet said “was sent to eliminate the Israeli businessman.”
Sagi reportedly left Cyprus together with other Israelis who were with him just a few days before the suspected assassin was caught very close to the building in which the billionaire conducts his business.
The suspect was carrying a pistol, silencer, gloves and other equipment at the time of his arrest.
According to the report, Cypriot authorities initially believed the hit was an intended Iranian terror attack, but updated information now reportedly indicates the targeted assassination was organized by unnamed others.
Update: The Prime Minister’s office announced on Monday that Sagi was not specifically the target of the attack, but confirmed the attempted attack was terrorism, and not criminal, and was aimed at Israeli businessmen.