ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) -- A Virginia man has been sentenced to 18 months in prison after admitting he spied on U.S.-based Syrian dissidents for the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Mohamad Soueid of Leesburg pleaded guilty earlier this year to acting as an unregistered foreign agent of the Syrian government. But his guilty plea had been under seal until Friday, when he was sentenced in federal court in Alexandria.
Court papers show the Syrian-born U.S. citizen admitted sending video and audio recordings of dissidents to members of Syrian intelligence. He also personally discussed dissident activity in the U.S. with Assad in a private meeting in Syria last year.
Soueid's attorney could not be reached for comment. The 18-month sentence was shorter than the six-year term sought by the government.