An Israeli ex-minister has been sentenced to 11 years in prison for “spying for Iran” after a plea bargain in the case, the prosecutor said.

Gonen Segev, who served as energy and infrastructure minister from 1995 to 1996, had agreed to a plea bargain on charges of serious espionage and transfer of information to Iran, AFP reported.

Court hearings were held in secret due to the nature of the case.

“Segev confessed that he acted on behalf of the Iranian intelligence forces for five years, maintained regular communications with his handlers using a clandestine channel and that he provided Iran a diverse range of information – including top secret information,” the prosecutor added.

Segev was elected to the 13th Israeli parliament (Knesset) in 1992. He also served as the  energy and infrastructure minister from 1995 to 1996.

Last June, Israel’s Security Agency, better known by the acronym Shabak or the Shin Bet, said that Segev had been arrested a month earlier on suspicion of committing the offenses of assisting the enemy in a time of war and of spying against Israel.

An investigation by the Shin Bet and the police found that Segev had acted as an agent on behalf of the Iranian intelligence, made contact with officials in the Iranian Embassy in Nigeria in 2012 and visited Iran twice to meet intelligence officials.

It also found that Segev had met with his Iranian operators around the world and received a secret communications system to encrypt the messages between himself and his operators.

During his interrogation in June 2018, the ex-Israeli minister admitted to having established links with Iranian officials, but claimed that he had had no ideological or financial reason to spy for Iran.