Judge orders accused Syrian spy free on bail

By the Associated Press | October 21, 2011 | 3:45 PM EDT

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A judge has agreed to let an accused Syrian spy serve home detention while he awaits trial, despite government concerns the man is a flight risk.

Also on Tuesday, the suspect's lawyer rescinded an assertion that 47-year-old Mohamad Soueid (SWAYD) traveled to Syria as part of a delegation led by Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio. The lawyer now says Soueid was part of a different delegation.

Soueid, of Leesburg, is charged with illegally monitoring the activities of Syrian dissidents in the U.S. who oppose the regime of President Bashar Assad.

The federal judge's ruling Tuesday does not mean that Soueid will immediately go free. Prosecutors say they will appeal, and a final ruling on Soueid's detention will be made by a district court judge.