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LAPD bomb squad officers to train in Israel

by Ryan Torok

March 8, 2011 | 6:21 pm

Four Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) bomb squad technicians are visiting Israel to train with their counterparts in the Israeli National Police Bomb Squad.

Ronald Capra, an LAPD bomb squad officer who will accompany three other officers for the training, said LAPD’s “exposure to local [Israeli] bomb units” will help the LAPD learn more about how to handle and dispose of explosive devices, given Israeli technicians’ experience with suicide attacks.

“They’ve paid the price for it,” Capra said, referring to Israeli lives lost in bomb-related violence, but they are the “foremost” experts on explosives “in the world.” Capra also emphasized the importance of a relationship between Los Angeles and Israel to facilitate the “exchange of information.”

The training will start in May and last approximately two weeks.

Chuck Boxenbaum, a prominent donor to Birthright Israel and a past chairman of The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles, recently donated funds to the Los Angeles Police Foundation, an organization that provides resources for the LAPD that the city can’t offer, to be used for the trip, which will cost approximately $18,000.

On Feb. 17, Boxenbaum sponsored a breakfast at Hillcrest Country Club, where Capra gave a presentation about the training to local representatives of the Israeli community, including Gil Artzyeli, deputy consul general of Israel in Los Angeles.

Artzyeli said he welcomed the municipal partnership between local law enforcement and its Israeli counterparts as an addition to the already-existing United States-Israel federal relationship.

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