Report: Israel Offers Prisoner Exchange for Ilan Grapel

Jerusalem authorities offer to release three Egyptians in Israeli prisons in return for Ilan Grapel, who is accused of spying on Israel's behalf, according to an Egyptian news website.

Israel offered Egypt a prisoner swap in return for the release of arrested American-Israeli Ilan Grapel, according to a report by Egyptian news website Al Akhbar on Sunday.

According to a report by Channel 10 quoting Al Akhbar, authorities in Jerusalem offered to release three Egyptians held in Israeli jails in return for the release of Ilan Grapel, arrested in Cairo for allegedly spying on behalf of Israel.

Ilan Grapel Tahrir

The report has not been verified by any other source, said Channel 10, who added that Al Akhbar may not be the most reliable of sources.

The report said the prisoners are serving sentences in Israeli jails for various convictions, and the Egyptian authorities are considering Israel's offer. They are due to reach a decision within a few days, said Channel 10.

According to Sunday's report, Grapel met with the American consul in Egypt, who told him he's facing "big problems."

In contradiction to previous statements by an Egyptian judge official that the prosecution does not plan to prosecute Grapel, Al Akhbar reported that an Egyptian legal source said if Grapel is found guilty of his alleged crimes, he is likely to face 15 years in an Egyptian prison. Various reports say the public prosecutor is due to file an indictment against Grapel this week.

Egypt's al-Shorouk newspaper said the public prosecutor is also expected to investigate suspected accomplices.

According to a report Thursday by Al Ahram newspaper, Grapel had attended meetings and conferences of various Egyptian political movements and parties, ranging from the Liberals to the Islamic streams. He followed military intelligence reports and tried to incite young people against the Supreme Military Council, which is considered the leader of the revolution, the paper said.

Al Ahram's reports were later denied by Judge Hisham Badawi of the Supreme State Security Prosecution.