IDF soldier sentenced to 45 months in jail for leaking intelligence
Corporal Elad Sela, a resident of Bat Ayin settlement who served in the Etzion Regional Brigade, is charged with passing on classified information to 'price tag' activists, allowing them to evade arrest and continue their activities. The court ruled that Sela had damaged state security.
A soldier accused of leaking classified information to right-wing Jewish activists was on Tuesday sentenced to 45 months in jail.
Corporal Elad Sela, 26, is a resident of Bat Ayin settlement in Gush Etzion. He has been convicted for passing on confidential military intelligence to "price tag" activists, as well as assisting them to evade security services and continue their hostile activities against the Palestinian population.
He was also sentenced to probation and removed from his military rank.
Sela served in the Etzion Regional Brigade, and has also been convicted for conducting searches within the intelligence system that were beyond his security clearance.
According to the charges, the purpose of these searches was to find information relating to "price tag" activists from the Bat Ayin settlement, as well as intelligence on activities the security forces were planning against them.
Throughout a prolonged period that ended with his arrest, Sela distributed classified information to different people, including those whom the intelligence concerned.
At the time of Sela's indictment, prosector Major Thea Shalit claimed: "The soldier repeatedly took advantage of his access to confidential information, which he passed to those who were the subject of that information.
"He was assigned to a sensitive post, and the military trusted him to perform his duties with loyalty to the army and the state, and his actions abused that trust in the gravest possible way," Shalit continued.
Sela, who is married and a father of two, was arrested on March 11 by the Nationalist Crimes Unit of the Samaria and Judea District Police. His arrest occurred after security forces established that right-wing activists were notified in advance of plans to arrest them following a "price tag" attack on a mosque in the area.
Suspicions were raised that the leak was coming from within the regional brigade because the physical area in question is under the responsibility of the military, and the activities of security forces in that area is displayed on the regional brigade's computers.
Sela was recruited to the army as part of a special track for ultra-Orthodox soldiers. He was appointed as a non-commissioned intelligence officer on the Etzion Regional Brigade base close to his house because he was married with a baby son.
Sela suffers from medical problems, and during his arrest and Shin Bet interrogation he was admitted to Beilinson Hospital because he felt unwell.
Responding to the sentence, the IDF said: "The punishment reflects the rigorous approach of the military prosecutor.
"Leaks such as this must be eradicated from the army and those who breach the trust given to them by the army and who harm security interests must be punished severely."