Mosab Hassan Yousef, a defector of Palestinian Islamic group Hamas, has been granted asylum in the United States after a hearing in San Diego today.
According to the San Diego Union Tribune, the trial only lasted 15 minutes before Homeland Security lawyer Kerri Calcador said that the U.S. government no longer opposed Yousef's 2007 request for asylum.
"I was surprised," Yousef told the Tribune. "This country is the greatest country because the Constitution protects liberty all the time."
Yousef originally fled to the United States in 2007 after working for both Hamas and, afterwards, as a spy for the Israeli government, where he helped prevent terrorist and suicide bombings. He detailed his experiences in his best-selling autobiography "Son of Hamas."
While many have credited Yousef with saving the lives of hundreds of Palestinians, Israelis and Americans, the Department of Homeland Security had labeled him as a potential "danger to the security of the United States" who had "engaged in terrorist activity," and denied him political asylum in 2009.
Yousef, who is a convert from Islam to Christianity, had expected a much tougher hearing today, writing in his blog last month that he was prepared to go through an "insane merry-go-round" of appeals possibly lasting for "decades."