Former Twitter employee on trial for spying for Saudi Arabia

According to the prosecution, Ahmad Abouammo, a “corrupt employee”, sold for tens of thousands of dollars to Riyadh detailed information on specific anonymous accounts.

The defense, before the jury retired to deliberate on Thursday, countered that he was just doing his job, simply accepting a few gifts.

“The evidence showed that, for money and when he thought he was doing it out of sight, the defendant sold his place to a relative” of the Saudi royal family, said federal prosecutor Colin Sampson. in his last words to the jury.

Ahmad Abouammo was arrested in Seattle in November 2021, believed to be working illegally for a foreign government.

Along with another Twitter employee, Ali Alzabarah, they are accused of having been approached by Ryad at the end of 2014-beginning of 2015 in order to transmit user data accessible only internally (email address, telephone number, date of birth, etc. .) that could allow Saudi Arabia to identify hitherto anonymous critics on the social network.

If Mr. Abouammo left Twitter in 2015 to move to Seattle, Ali Alzabarah, a Saudi, left the United States.

For Angela Chuang, Ahmad Abouammo’s lawyer, her client is on trial instead of Mr. Alzabarah. “And it’s their fault, (American justice) let Mr. Alzabarah flee the country while he was under FBI surveillance!”, She said.

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