USA arrests two Iranians on spying charges

USA arrests two Iranians on spying charges

Ahmadreza Mohammadi-Doostdar, 38, and Majid Ghorbani, 59, are accused of conducting surveillance on Israeli and Jewish facilities in the US and collecting information about American citizens who are members of MEK, an Iranian political organization that advocates the overthrow of the country's government.

They were arrested August 9.

This included Israelis and American Jews, as well as those linked to The People's Mujahedeen (MEK), an Iranian opposition organization that the United States considered a terror group until 2012.

They are also charged with collecting identifying information about American citizens and U.S. nationals who are members of the group Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK- People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran), an Iranian political organization in exile that advocates the overthrow of the current government in Iran.

"The National Security Division is committed to protecting the United States from individuals within our country who unlawfully act on behalf of hostile foreign nations", Assistant Attorney General John Demers said in the statement.

Mohammadi-Doostdar met Ghorbani a trip to California, the indictment reads. "With their arrest and these charges, we are seeking to hold the defendants accountable".

The indictment says they monitored Israeli and Jewish facilities in the US, including the Rohr Chabad House, a branch of Lubavitch Chabad of IL that serves students at the University of IL at Chicago.

The Iranian government has "sought to eradicate the MEK", U.S. agents said.

More news: Hurricane watch issued as Lane nears Hawaiian islands
More news: Iran oil minister: French oil giant Total pulls out if Iran
More news: Google Fit gets a hearty makeover to help you stay in shape

By December 2017, Doostar made contact with Ghorbani in the Los Angeles area.

The indictment says he paid $2,000 to Ghorbani in their meetings.

Those documents were discovered in Doostdar's luggage later that month at a USA airport as he tried to return to Iran.

Ghorbani attended an MEK rally in NY on September 20, 2017, to protest the current Iranian government, taking photographs of the participants, which he later passed on to Doostdar and was paid about $2,000.

On May 18, Ghorbani also took photographs of certain speakers and attendees of the 2018 Iran Freedom Convention for Human Rights in Washington, D.C., an event associated with Mojahedin-e Khalq, according to the Justice Department.

The stiffest penalty would be for violating the International Emergency Economic Powers Act - used to restrict commerce with Iran.

I24 News reports, "In March and April this year, Ghorbani went to Iran where, according to the indictment, he briefed government officials on his information on MEK and received a list of "taskings" for infiltrating the dissident group".

Related Articles

  • Russia's Putin, despite sanctions, still hopes for better USA  ties

    Russia's Putin, despite sanctions, still hopes for better USA ties

    In addition, the Trump administration said it's sanctioning two Russian firms and two Russian individuals. President Donald Trump at a summit in Helsinki in July, an encounter both sides said went well.
    Jamie Oliver responds to cultural appropriation claims about his jerk rice

    Jamie Oliver responds to cultural appropriation claims about his jerk rice

    She added: "It's an insult because jerk is from the Caribbean". " Jerk ...originated from Jamaica and they would be offended by this".

    VMAs: Madonna bashed over Aretha Franklin 'tribute'

    After congratulating ex-Fifth Harmony member Cabello on her five nominations, Haddish said sarcastically, "Hi Fifth Harmony". But the trophies were mostly in technical categories, including choreography and direction.
  • Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle quits new Bond movie

    Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle quits new Bond movie

    However, it's now officially OK to start mourning the fact we aren't going to get a James Bond film through Boyle's unique vision. It will be interesting to see if it's able to make that release date as the producers search for a new director.
    Trump Eases Coal-Pollution Curbs in Unwinding More Obama Rules

    Trump Eases Coal-Pollution Curbs in Unwinding More Obama Rules

    The EPA must take comment on the proposal for the next 60 days, and environmental groups are sure to fight it. Acting EPA chief Andrew Wheeler praised the decision.
    Milivojevic urged Salah to 'tell the referee it's not a penalty'

    Milivojevic urged Salah to 'tell the referee it's not a penalty'

    On talk of Liverpool taking the Premier League title away from defending champions Manchester City , Klopp added: 'It's very early.
  • Luke Jackson Guarantees Rocky-Like Upset

    Luke Jackson Guarantees Rocky-Like Upset

    Frampton looked fit and on form and sent a message to Warrington long before the post-fight ring talk. I was winning fights and beating big names but I wasn't enjoying it.
    Watch Rapper Post Malone and Aerosmith's Insane Live Collaboration at 2018 VMAs

    Watch Rapper Post Malone and Aerosmith's Insane Live Collaboration at 2018 VMAs

    The tribute didn't sit well with many of Franklin's fans, some of whom took to social media to call her out. Back in 2014, Swift explained her penchant for busting a move at award shows. "Not enough", she said.
    India pile on runs at Trent Bridge

    India pile on runs at Trent Bridge

    Kohli , whose patient batting has stood out in this Test, showed little frustration, confident something would give at some point. On day 2, Hardik Pandya had managed to dismiss 5 English batsmen helping the Men in Blue bundle England at a lowly score of 161.
  • Can Trump bend the Fed to his will?

    Can Trump bend the Fed to his will?

    But Kohn said it does put more pressure on Powell and other Fed officials to explain their actions and their perspectives. President Donald Trump leaves the Rose Garden with Jerome Powell, his nominee to become chairman of the U.S.
    Russian Hackers Target US Think Tanks, Political Orgs

    Russian Hackers Target US Think Tanks, Political Orgs

    Microsoft's latest announcement on Russian hackers comes less than a month after a similar discovery by Microsoft led U.S. Another target for their criticism was the two-hour closed-door meeting between Trump and Putin in Helsinki.
    Is Bryce Harper Getting Traded?

    Is Bryce Harper Getting Traded?

    Wisdom, 26, goes back to the minors, where he played 747 career games before getting his first major league call-up August 11. The Nationals reportedly put a number of players up for waivers on Friday, with some of them getting claimed Sunday night.