A Saudi-owned newspaper says the kingdom's counterterrorism court has sentenced a Syrian national to eight years in prison on charges related to espionage.

Al-Hayat reported on Wednesday that the Specialized Criminal Court found the defendant, who was not named, guilty of sharing information on Syrian opposition figures and dissidents residing in Saudi Arabia that benefits the Syrian government.

Saudi Arabia is a backer of Syrian opposition groups fighting to oust President Bashar Assad. It's also home to several Syrian opposition figures and in December hosted a conference of Syrian opposition groups attempting to form a unified position.

The newspaper reported on the court's verdict, which was issued Tuesday, saying the defendant published information that could impact public order and posted material online that insults Saudi Arabia and its people.