Iranian agents planned to kidnap dissident journalist living in Brooklyn – HotAir
His name is Masih Alinejad and he fled Iran in 2009 after stories critical of the regime led to the revocation of his press credentials. He now lives in Brooklyn and has continued to write critical articles on Iran. Today, unsealed court documents reveal that she was the target of a kidnapping plot by four Iranian agents:
Court documents allege that Alireza Shavaroghi Farahani, 50, Mahmoud Khazein, 42; Kiya Sadeghi, 35; and Omid Noori, 45, are charged with conspiring to kidnap and bring the victim to Iran after the individual had been working to influence public opinion both at home and globally to change laws and practices of the current regime.
“This is not an implausible movie plot. We allege that a group, backed by the Iranian government, conspired to kidnap a US-based journalist here on our soil and forcibly return her to Iran. Not under our control, ”said FBI Deputy Director William F. Sweeney.
All the conspirators live in Iran and work for the intelligence services. They had already hired private investigators in New York to track down and photograph Alinejad. home and family:
The intelligence official, Mr. Farahani, and his network used private investigators to monitor, photograph and videotape Ms. Alinejad and members of her household in Brooklyn, the government said.
The extensive surveillance that Farahani’s network obtained included the use of live high-definition video showing Ms. Alinejad’s home, prosecutors said.
The exact plan is unclear. The NY Times reports that they may have been trying to lure her to another country where she could more easily be kidnapped. But NBC reports that one of the people involved in the plot investigated “” military-style speedboats “and the possibility of sea travel from New York to Venezuela.
Whatever the plan, the idea that she was a potential target was not new to Alinejad. In fact, the Iranians had announced it last year. She wrote about the experience of the washington post.
A few days ago, I woke up at my home in Brooklyn to learn that the Iranian government had unleashed a campaign on social media calling for my abduction. Jame-Jam, the country’s leading newspaper, warned: “Masih! Be prepared! You are the next to be kidnapped. “Ebrahim Rezaei, deputy head of the Parliament’s Judicial Committee, urged the intelligence services to kidnap me. Photoshopped images showed me in front of my interrogators in hijab and handcuffs …
The calls for my kidnapping come after a series of attacks on my family.
Security forces in 2018 made my sister go on state television to publicly repudiate I. Last year, my brother Alireza Alinejad, the father of two young children, was arrested and dragged to the famous Evin prison. Later 10 months in detentionincluding physical and psychological torture, he was tried in secret, without the presence of his lawyer, and sentenced to eight years in prison.
She writes that the Iranian regime views kidnapping as part of foreign policy and has done so since 1979 when they took Americans hostage. It’s good to see that the regime won’t get away with it this time.
This BBC report is from three years ago and offers some background on Alinejad’s story and why Iranians hate her so much. It has to do with the hijab and its campaign against compulsory use by women from the age of seven.