Israel says indicts ex-cabinet minister over alleged spying for Iran

Gonen Segev and the Iranian flag

He was released in 2007.

Shin Bet alleged that he had given the handlers information relating to Israel's energy sector, security sites in Israel, and officials in political and security institutions, and also put the handlers in contact with some Israelis involved in the security sector by introducing them as businessmen.

Gonen Segev, a former Israeli lawmaker, has been accused of spying for Iran.

Gonen Segev, a former Israeli lawmaker, is accused of spying for Iran and aiding the enemy during wartime, the Shin Bet security service said Monday. He was transferred to Israel at the request of the Israel Police after Equatorial Guinea refused him entry due to his criminal record.

Segev was lured to the Iranian embassy in 2012 under the guise of treating the children of its diplomatic staff, Israel's Channel 10 news reported.

According to Israel's Channel 10, Segev told interrogators that he "wanted to fool the Iranians and come back to Israel a hero" as his reputation in the home country had been tarnished.

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By going to work for the Iranians, he was reportedly hoping to mislead them and ultimately restore his reputation that was tarnished by the drug bust from over a decade ago, the TV report said. The ex-minister also held meetings with Iranians in hotels and safe houses around the globe and had received a special device to pass on encrypted messages, it added. Israel considers Iran to be its biggest threat, citing Iranian calls for Israel's destruction, Iran's support for hostile militant groups like Hezbollah and its development of long-range missiles.

The statement said that Segev maintained connections with Israeli civilians who had ties to the country's security and foreign relations.

The United Nations's International Atomic Energy Agency has repeatedly said that Iran is complying with the accord.

On May 18, 2018, Segev was arrested and indicted, with the approval of the Attorney General and State Attorney, for numerous offenses related to espionage and assisting an enemy in time of war. All other details regarding the case are subject to a gag order.

"Even at this early stage it can be said that the permitted publication attributes extreme gravity to the events, even though within the indictment, of which the full details remain confidential, a different picture is painted", the lawyers stated.

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