Intelligence provided by the Shin Bet led to the conviction and sentencing of a Hamas member in a court in Austria. The terrorist planned a terror attack in Jerusalem and used the Internet to contact and recruit terrorists in the West Bank.

Hamas terrorists | Archive

Hamas terrorists | Archive Photo Credit: Reuters/ Channel 2 News

Earlier today, a court in Austria sentenced a Hamas terrorist, released by Israel in the Gilad Shalit deal, to life imprisonment for conspiring and soliciting others to perpetrate a terror attack in Jerusalem. The terrorist, whose name is currently under a gag order in Austria, lived in the Gaza Strip and was staying in Austria. Over the course of 2016, he contacted two residents of the West Bank via the Internet and arranged for them to recruit additional terrorists to carry out grenade attacks in Jerusalem.

After receiving intelligence that revealed the terrorist’s desire to plan an attack in Israel, the Shin Bet managed to track down the Hamas member in Austria. The intelligence was then transferred to the Austrian authorities, where the terrorist was arrested. Four residents of the West Bank were arrested on suspicion of involvement in the terrorist’s plan and were indicted. The legal proceedings in their case are still ongoing.

As part of the investigation and prosecution of the terrorist in Austria- and at the request of the Austrian authorities- the State of Israel provided legal assistance to the prosecution, which included sharing the testimony of the four West Bank residents who were tried in Israel; the judge in Austria watched their testimony at the Tel Aviv District Court via live video conference and had the chance to question the witnesses. A week ago, the legal proceedings in Austria came to a close and the terrorist was convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment.