Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh.
(photo credit: AP)
A Yemeni court on Monday sentenced Bassam al-Haidari, an Islamic activist, to death and gave jail sentences to two others after convicting them of seeking to work for Israeli intelligence services, Reuters reported.
The three were charged with e-mailing Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's office and offering to work for the Mossad.
"This is an unfair ruling," Bassam al-Haidari shouted upon hearing his death sentence. Judge Mohsen Elwan also ruled that Ali al-Mahfal be imprisoned for five years and Ammar al-Raimi for three years.
"The court has found that the evidence is reliable and all the charges in the prosecution report are correct," Elwan said.
According to AFP, one of e-mails said: "We are the Organisation of Islamic Jihad and you are Jews, but you are honest, and we are ready to do anything."
The charge sheet said Olmert responded to Haidari, also known as Abu al-Ghaith, welcoming his offer to collaborate.
"We are ready to support you to become an obstacle in the Middle East. We will support you as an agent," AFP said Olmert was quoted as writing.
The three men deny the charges and say they were fabricated by an officer they had an argument with, and intend to appeal against the ruling.
"I seek God's help against you," Raimi told the judge.