CAIRO: The trial of an Egyptian trader accused of spying for Israel opened on Saturday in Cairo but was swiftly adjourned after the defence lawyer quit.
Tarek Abdel Razek Hassan was arrested in August and charged with harming Egypt’s national interests. Two Israelis have been charged in absentia.
The judge adjourned the trial Saturday after Hassan’s court-appointed lawyer quit and accused him of being a traitor.
He is accused of supplying Israel’s Mossad spy agency, between 2007 and 2010, with the names of potential recruits employed in the telecommunications sectors in Egypt, Lebanon and Syria.
The three suspects are charged with "espionage and endangering the interests of Egypt" and "carrying out activities which could lead to a breakdown in relations" with Syria and Lebanon.
Authorities say Hassan received $7,500 to try to recruit employees working for telecommunications companies in the three countries to spy for Israel.
Israel said it had no information on the case. The next hearing will be held Monday.