Iran sentences U.S. national to 10 years for spying

July 16 (UPI) — An unidentified Iranian-American was sentenced to 10 years in prison in a spying case, an Iranian official said Sunday.

“This person, who was gathering information and was directly guided by America, was sentenced to 10 years in prison, but the sentence can be appealed,” Iranian deputy judiciary chief Gholamhossein Mohseni-Ejheie said in a video statement carried by the semi-official agency Fars News.

He gave no other details about the Iranian-American, including the gender, the arrest and the dates of the trial.

Those convicted have 20 days to appeal a sentence.

In the same announcement, the brother of President Hassan Rouhani was arrested on charges of “financial irregularities.” as part of an investigation that involved others. Ferydoon failed to post an unspecified bail and was sent to prison, the spokesman said.

In October 2016, Reza “Robin” Shahini of San Diego was sentenced to 18 years in prison for spying. The U.S.-Iranian citizen, who was visiting family in Gorgan, Iran, was released on bail in April to await his appeal, The Center For Human Rights in Iran said.

Also that month, Iran sentenced Iranian-Americans Baquer Namazi and his son Siamik to 10 years in prison and fined them $4.8 million for “collaborating with a foreign government,” according to Iran’s official news channel IRINN.

Last year, Iran released four U.S. prisoners as part of a prisoner swap granting clemency to seven Iranians indicted or imprisoned in the United States.

“The Iranian regime continues to detain U.S. citizens and other foreigners on fabricated national-security related changes,” a State Department official told CNN. “The safety and security of U.S. citizens remains a top priority. All U.S. citizens, especially dual nationals considering travel to Iran, should carefully read our latest travel warning.”‎


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