Hizbullah flag border 248.88.
(photo credit: AP [file])
In the first indictment since Lebanese authorities began a crackdown on an alleged Israeli spy ring earlier this year, a Lebanese military prosecutor on Wednesday formally charged a local car dealer accused of passing information about Hizbullah to Israel, demanding that he be sentenced to life in prison.
Prosecutor Rashid Mizher said the suspect, from the southern market town of Nabatiyeh, was accused of providing Israel with information about Hizbullah and Lebanese army positions, as well as entering Israel and meeting with intelligence officials.
Mizher said he initially recommended the death penalty for the suspect but reduced it to life in prison because he was not involved in attacks against any Lebanese. The formal indictment is the last legal step before the case goes to court. No date for the trial has been set.
The case became public in the spring when media reported the suspect was involved in an operation to fit cars he later sold to Hizbullah members with sophisticated electronic devices that provided Israeli intelligence with information about terrorists' whereabouts and movements.
Lebanese security officials confirmed he was picked up by Hizbullah in January and handed over to Lebanese authorities in February.
Israel in the past declined to comment on the case.
Earlier this month, a Lebanese security source claimed that a Lebanese army colonel suspected of spying for Israel had fled to the Jewish state a week earlier, Reuters reported.
Lebanese authorities have made dozens of arrests in recent months and filed preliminary charges against people suspected of collaborating with Israel.