Alleged Israeli agent free on bail in Germany: prosecutors

13th August 2010, Comments 0 comments

Germany on Friday released on bail an alleged Israeli agent suspected of links to the January killing in Dubai of a leader of the Palestinian militant movement Hamas, prosecutors said.

Polish authorities, who had arrested Uri Brodsky in June at Warsaw airport on suspicion of obtaining a German passport under false pretences, had extradited him to Germany Thursday.

He appeared Friday before a magistrate in the western city of Cologne, who released him on bail and he may now return to Israel as his maximum penalty would be a fine covered by the bail payment, a spokesman for the city prosecutor's office told AFP.

"The arrest warrant was suspended after an agreement between the district court and the prosecutor's office," the spokesman said, adding that bail had been set at "an appropriate amount" without providing details.

Brodsky is accused of illegally obtaining a German passport which was later found to have been used by a member of the hit-squad that killed Mahmud al-Mabhuh of Hamas in a Dubai hotel room.

The squad, which Dubai police believe was from Israeli spy agency Mossad, was found to have used 26 doctored foreign passports, sparking diplomatic fallout not only with Germany but also Australia, Britain, France and Ireland.

Israel has denied any Mossad involvement in the al-Mabhuh assassination.

Germany had originally wanted Brodsky on charges of espionage. But a Polish court ruled this month that he would only be extradited on charges of obtaining a German passport under false pretences.

© 2010 AFP

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