Iran’s attempt to kidnap Masih Alinejad, an American journalist and human rights activist, is not the first time the Islamic regime allegedly coordinated violence against a target on American soil.
In 2013, Manssor Arbabsiar, a naturalized American citizen hired by Iranian terrorists, received 25 years in prison for plotting the murder of Adel al Jubeir, the then-Saudi Arabian ambassador to the United States.
“Manssor Arbabsiar was an enemy among us — the key conduit for, and facilitator of, a nefarious international plot concocted by members of the Iranian military to assassinate the Saudi Ambassador to the United States and as many innocent bystanders as necessary to get the job done,” said then-U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara.
Arbabsiar began networking in the spring of 2011 with his co-conspirators, some of whom were part of the Iranian Quds Force, a secretive special operations division of the country’s military led by the now-deceased Qassem Soleimani.
Another of his confidants in the plot was a person identified by the Justice Department as “CS-1,” who told Arbabsiar he was a member of an international drug trafficking cartel. Arbabsiar gave CS-1 $100,000 as a down payment to carry out the killing and agreed to a later payout of approximately $1.5 million when the plan was completed.
Arbabsiar was ordered to find an assassin by his cousin, who served as a “big general” in Iran, he told CS-1.
The two met multiple times throughout 2011 in Mexico, where Arbabsiar asked CS-1 about his knowledge of explosives and how they could use it to kill al Jubeir.
CS-1 had dispatched an accomplice to Washington, D.C., to spy on the ambassador, who found that al Jubeir frequented a particular restaurant in the district, he told Arbabsiar, also raising concerns about bystanders who could be caught in an explosion.
“They want that guy done; if the hundred go with him, f*** ‘em,” Arbabsiar said. He dismissed CS-1’s worries that U.S. senators and representatives also frequented the restaurant as “no big deal.”
Albabsiar proposed the plan for CS-1 to blow up the D.C. restaurant with al Jubeir inside to Quds Force leadership. They approved the plan, additional casualties and all.
The operation was a go, but there was one problem.
CS-1 was an undercover Drug Enforcement Administration agent working for the FBI, and the account into which Arbabsiar wired the $100,000 down payment was run by the bureau.
In September 2011, CS-1 told Arbabsiar that the plan was ready, but he asked Arbabsiar either to pay half of the $1.5 million honorarium before the explosion or to travel to Mexico as collateral while the operation was in progress. Arbabsiar agreed to the latter.
With border authorities on high alert, Arbabsiar was denied entry into Mexico and sent back to John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City, where he was arrested by federal agents.
He pleaded guilty to charges of murder-for-hire, conspiracy to commit murder-for-hire, and conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism transcending national boundaries.
On May 30, 2013, Arbabsiar was sentenced to 25 years in prison.
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Original Author: Charles Hilu
Original News : https://news.yahoo.com/iran-attempted-kidnapping-american-journalist-213900413.html