January 26, 2012
BEIRUT: Lebanon’s military court on Tuesday upheld a verdict against a former army general and politician currently allied with Hezbollah who was convicted of leaking information to Israel, a judicial source said.
“Lebanon’s military appeals court upheld the two-year jail sentence against retired general Fayez Karam but restored his civil rights,” the source told AFP.
Karam in September was found guilty of contacting Israeli intelligence and providing them with information on Hezbollah and its ally the Christian Free Patriotic Movement (FPM), of which the retired general is a member.
The verdict did not find Karam guilty of spying for Israel.
Karam was arrested last summer, the first political figure to be detained in Lebanon as part of probe launched in 2009 into Israeli spy networks.
The 62-year-old headed the Lebanese army’s anti-terrorism and counter-espionage unit during the 1980s and was close to FPM leader Michel Aoun, who was army chief toward the end of the 1975-1990 civil war.
Aoun, who was staunchly anti-Syrian during the civil war, entered into a controversial alliance with the Iran and Syria-backed Hezbollah in 2006, a year after returning to Lebanon from exile in France.
More than 100 people have been arrested on suspicion of spying for the Israeli Mossad since April 2009, including members of the security forces and telecom employees.
Several have since been sentenced to death, including one found guilty of aiding Israel during its devastating 2006 war with Hezbollah.