On Friday, November 11, 1996, Yediot Achronot published an article
by Ariela Ringel-Hofman. It was the outstanding story of a 49 years
old physicist, Israel Frid.
On December 22, 1992, U.S. Patent was granted to the
physicist, Fried, over Space launcher and method for launching
objects into space
Patent 5172875. The essence of his invention is a
multi-stage space launcher for launching satellites and other
payloads into space for orbiting around the Earth. The ratio of
the weight of any lower rocket stage to the weight of the rocket
stage directly above it is between 0.5 and less than 2.5!
Two years later, Israeli Aircraft Industry, IAI's MLM Division,
filed against Fried a lawsuit, alleging that he had plundered
their proprietary by applying privately to acquire U.S. Patent
over the "Shavit" - a small satellite launch vehicle that lifts
satellites to low Earth orbits. Alternatively, they pleaded
that even if Fried had invented something then it was their proprietary,
as Fried invented it in the course and as part of his duties at this firm.
Fried could not find a competent defence lawyer, as he has been
unemployed following an alleged concocted conspiracy against him.
Moreover, "Malmav" a section of the Israeli secret service did not
grant him any defence lawyer from the list that he had provided.
They used a banal pretext, "secrecy requirements."
The trial was conducted behind closed doors. The verdict was
sharply given (November 1996) by Hon. Judge Sarah Sirotah.
She "did not believe defendant's version" - she wrote -
"defendant's shrewdness greed and passion motivated him."
"He had not acted in good faith, or perhaps he was looking for vengeance"
over his former employer, the IAI.
The few good words she wrote were even more hurting,
"he is a clever man" - she wrote -
"and he knew how to focus on the issues."
Following this verdict the reporter met with Fried. He was
quite excited and agitated, putting salt in his coffee instead of
sugar, filling his glass over the edge, likely surfing elsewhere.
"I don't know why the judge ruled that I was greedy. Every
inventor wishes to be recognized, and every inventor would look
for a reward" - said Fried to the reporter.
He used the cheapest means of transportation arriving at the
meetings with the journalist. Quite seldom he arrived with his
smoky Renault. It may show his detrimental financial
situation after all those awful years for him. He was unable to
be hired for employment anywhere in Israel after the IAI had fired
him on March 31, 1988, because of "reduction of man power."
- If Fried was not a good employee then why had the IAI kept
him working for elevn years, from 1977 to 1988?
- Why had Fried proposal to save 70-80% of a launcher size been
initially ignored by the IAI? (See
- Why has the IAI delayed his promotion and hindered his life
at the work place, in an alleged attempt to induce his resignation?
- It was apparently proven during this trial that Fried had
attempted to consult with the IAI and the Israeli Ministry of Defence
in 1988 with respect to his patent application.
- Has the IAI and the State of Israel acted in good faith?
In 1989, a year after he had been denied application
for an Israeli patent, he applied for a
U.S. Patent that was granted December 1992. Only then the
IAI filed against him a lawsuit, although they had known he was
about to file this application.
- Why does the head of "Malmav" (secret service) prohibit the
IAI and the Ministry of Defense staff to comment over his
allegation before and after it is published by Yediot Achronot?
- Why had the legal counsel of the IAI oferred Fried a payment
of 3,000 Israeli Shekels (less than $1,000) for his invention?
- Why has the court ignored the fact that the IAI had lost its
right to appeal over the U.S. patent? Judge
Sirotah ruled that even if there was a negligence on behalf ohf the IAI
to appeal, Fried may not benefit from their irresponsibility.
Notwithstanding the court granted Fried the fees that he had paid
for U.S. Patent application, also ruled that the IAI should reimburse
Fried for the hours he had spent for applying, if the IAI decides
to use this
A retired (from the IAI) senior officer responded anonymously
that the court decision was likely proper with respect to the
issue whether Fried had a legal right over the patent that he
applied for. However, the conduct of the IAI and the Ministry
of Defence was quite unfair, to say the least. They taught
Fried a lesson that he had not deserved.
Adv. Jacob Kalderon who defended Fried in this trial said to the
reporter, "it's not as easy to find people who would testify against