Gonen Segev, energy and infrastructure minister from 1992 to 1995, was arrested in Israel last April after the Dutch police recovered a bag of drugs he had hidden in an airport locker at Amsterdam's Schiphol airport. 

Police said he had been the subject of an Israeli-Dutch police investigation into suspicions he was involved in an Israeli drug-smuggling ring. 

He had stowed the drugs, disguised as packets of M&M chocolates, in the locker after airport guards treated him with suspicion as he prepared to board a flight to Israel. 

The 49-year-old physician admitted in a plea-bargain deal with prosecutors to the attempted drug smuggling and forging an extension of his expired diplomatic passport that he received when he served as a cabinet minister.

"Nothing but monetary greed is what blinded the accused," the Haaretz daily on Thursday quoted the judge in a Tel Aviv court as saying as he gave Segev the maximum punishment under the plea bargain. 

Segev, who belonged to the now-defunct, rightwing Tsomet party, initially denied all charges but later confessed.