JERUSALEM (JTA) — Former Israeli soldier Anat Kamm, who turned classified military documents over to a reporter, was sentenced to 54 months in jail.
The 4.5-year sentence and 18-month probation, announced Sunday in Tel Aviv District Court, is much less than the 15 years requested by prosecutors.
Her two-year house arrest will not be counted as time served.
Kamm was convicted in February 2011 of collecting, holding and passing on classified information without authorization. She had originally been charged with espionage; the charge was dropped as part of a plea bargain. Kamm was arrested in late 2009 or early 2010.
Kamm admitted to stealing about 2,000 documents, hundreds identified as classified or top secret, which she downloaded on to two discs, while serving her mandatory military service in the Israeli army’s Central Command. She turned the information over to Haaretz reporter Uri Blau, who wrote stories based on the information that were approved by the military censor. The stories led to a search for Blau’s source
Following her military service, Kamm was a media reporter for Walla, an online news site that was then partly owned by Haaretz.
“I didn’t have the chance to change some of the things that I found important to change during my military service, and I thought that by exposing these [materials] I would make a change,” Kamm is quoted as saying in the police documents. “It was important for me to bring the IDF’s policy to public knowledge.”