An Israeli court on Thursday sentenced a lawyer to seven and a half years in prison for helping to relay information between Hamas prisoners in Israeli jails and the terror group’s leaders in the Gaza Strip.
Muhammad Abed, whose clients included security prisoners, was in contact with Firas Fidi, a Hamas activist who was convicted of carrying out terror attacks in Israel, sentenced to life imprisonment, and then released to Gaza as part of the 2011 prisoner swap for Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.
He was also convicted of being in touch with five “foreign agents,” with the aim of helping Hamas and harming state security.
In addition to the prison term, the Haifa District Court gave Abed a choice between one year’s suspended sentence, a NIS 50,000 ($13,700) fine to be paid by May 1, 2018, and an additional five months behind bars.
Responding to the sentence, Abed told Channel 2 news that he’d been done an injustice and would appeal to the Supreme Court.
Abed’s lawyer, Ahmad Yunis, said the charges were “absurd” and noted that former Joint (Arab) List lawymaker Basel Ghattas was given only two years in prison as part of a plea bargain for the worse crime of smuggling cellphones to inmates.
The Times of Israel covers one of the most complicated, and contentious, parts of the world. Determined to keep readers fully informed and enable them to form and flesh out their own opinions, The Times of Israel has gradually established itself as the leading source of independent and fair-minded journalism on Israel, the region and the Jewish world.
We've achieved this by investing ever-greater resources in our journalism while keeping all of the content on our site free.
Unlike many other news sites, we have not put up a paywall. But we would like to invite readers who can afford to do so, and for whom The Times of Israel has become important, to help support our journalism by joining The Times of Israel Community. Join now and for as little as $6 a month you can both help ensure our ongoing investment in quality journalism, and enjoy special status and benefits as a Times of Israel Community member.