5 years for Hamas man who conspired to aid enemy

Munir Attun bought weapons to carry out terror attacks, helped Hamas member in Gaza.

February 29, 2012 12:59
2 minute read.
Members of al-Kassam brigades.

A member of the Kassam Brigades. (photo credit: REUTERS/Ismail Zaydah)

The Jerusalem District Court sentenced a member of Hamas to five years in prison on Wednesday for security offenses including conspiring to aid the enemy in wartime.

Attorneys for Munir Attun, 29, agreed a plea bargain with the state, according to which Attun admitted the charges, which also included contact with a foreign agent, carrying and possessing weapons and purchasing items for terrorist purposes.

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The latter is a crime under the Prohibition of Terror Financing Act.

According to the indictment, during Operation Cast Lead in 2008, Attun met with two other men, Ahmad Nimer and Ahmad Dawit. After Nimer told Attun that he wanted to make a bomb to carry out a terror attack, Attun gave him instructions about how to build a gas balloon bomb, which he learned from the internet. The two men agreed to meet again to further their plot.

Attun purchased a gas canister, the indictment says, and together with Nimer emptied it and modified it in order to fill it with explosives.

Some months later, Attun met with Dawit, and agreed to his request to purchase weapons for the terror attack. Attun obtained $5,000 from Nimer and drove to Bethlehem, where he purchased a handgun for Dawit. Throughout 2009 and 2010, the gang of three met several times to discuss their plans, and in January 2010 stashed the gas cylinder and ammunition in Dawit’s house.

In 2010, Attun’s nephew, Jihad Attun, contacted a man who said he belonged to Hamas in Gaza. Jihad told Attun about the man from Gaza, and about how he wanted to carry out terror attacks. Attun said that he needed about $30,000 to buy weapons for the attack.

In February 2011, Jihad received 10,000 dinars from Gaza and Attun told him that he should buy two handguns and a rifle.

Attun’s attorneys argued that their client’s offenses were of lesser severity than those of Nimer and Dawit, who have received prison terms of four and three and a half years respectively.

In sentencing Attun to five years in prison, the panel of judges – Jacob Zaban, Miriam Mizrahi and Raphael Carmel – said that Attun had been the link between his two friends, and that the activities with which he was involved suggested “his state of mind and his intentions,” even though no terror attack had taken place.

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