NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
A Hezbollah spy who laid low in the Bronx was sentenced to 40 years in prison Tuesday after telling a judge he still sympathized with the terrorist-designated organization. Ali Kourani claimed the FBI wrongly rejected his efforts to betray Hezbollah and become an informant. The government countered he was merely trying to avoid facing justice as his cover in the terrorist sleeper cell fell apart. The case represented the first time a member of Hezbollah’s Islamic Jihad Organization had been sentenced in a U.S. courthouse, Assistant U.S. Attorney Emil Bove said. The prosecutor told Judge Alvin Hellerstein that Kourani’s case had huge implications for Hezbollah’s patron, Iran, as well as public safety around the world. “Your voice will be heard today in Lebanon. Your voice will heard in Iran, which is directing IJO operations,” Bove said.
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