Following the arrest of former Knesset Member and Cabinet Minister Gonen Segev on charges of spying for Iran, ex-security officials in Israel have said that they suspect that there are more “undetected” spies working for the country’s enemies, Israel Hayom reported on Tuesday.
“Gonen Segev was screwed up enough to commit serious crimes,” said Yitzhak Ilan. The Deputy Director of internal security agency Shin Bet in 2010/11 added that he expected that although Segev probably spied for money, there are also other possibilities. “Segev said that Israelis do not accept him. He apparently harboured strong feelings of revenge toward Israel.”
Current Israel Antiquities Authority CEO Yisrael Hasson, another former Shin Bet Deputy Director and former MK, described the Segev case as extremely grave. “Once a scumbag, always a scumbag,” he told the Israeli newspaper. “He was always more a criminal than an elected official.”
Hasson pointed out that it is extremely complicated to identify and ascertain this kind of espionage and intercept it. “An MK and a minister is not a man who is under day-to-day scrutiny. The Knesset is the last place where you would look for spies.” Segev, he claimed, managed to continue his espionage for several years and, according to the reports, with some degree of intensity. “Shin Bet will study the case and draw the necessary conclusions.”
In 2004, Segev was charged with smuggling drugs into Israel and stripped of his licence as a doctor. He then travelled to Nigeria to work in the medical profession. It is believed that he made his initial contacts with Iran at the embassy in the capital Abuja.