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8617Fw: Israeli convicted of spying for Hizbullah

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  • MEW
    Dec 1, 2002

      Israeli convicted of spying for Hizbullah

      Nissim Nasser, a Jewish immigrant from Lebanon who was charged with spying for Hizbullah, was convicted of espionage by
      Tel Aviv District Court Thursday after signing a plea-bargain agreement with the prosecution.
      The two sides recommended to the court that Nasser be sentenced to six years in jail and a suspended sentence. The court
      is not obliged to accept the joint recommendation.
      Nasser came here 10 years ago and married here. He lived in Holon and had two daughters. He is the son of a Shi'ite
      father and a Jewish mother.

      According to the indictment, Nasser carried out assignments for Hizbullah through the mediation of his brother,
      Muhammad. He was asked to provide Hizbullah with various types of information, including maps of Tel Aviv with diagrams
      indicating the location of gas depots and electric power stations, information on other sensitive installations, troop
      movements, and government moves in the Gaza Strip and southern Lebanon.

      Nasser allegedly photographed installations several cities and was asked to provide Hizbullah with a photograph of a
      close relative who works in the defense establishment.

      He was due to fly to an undisclosed destination to meet his handlers, hand over the information, and receive payment,
      but was arrested before the trip.

      Prosecutor Dvora Chen told the court that six years was a reasonable punishment for a man who only spied for a short
      time and did not have access to classified information. The prosecution preferred a plea bargain because it freed Shin
      Bet investigators from a lengthy trial.

      Nasser's lawyer, Ronit Robinson, said that his motive was not money but fear for the safety of his brother. "Nasser
      himself had been jailed in Lebanon and suspected of collaboration, and so understood that if his brother turned to him
      and asked of him what he had asked, he was doing so because he had no other choice," she told the court.

      The sentence will be handed down on December 11.