Iranian Operatives Plotted to Kidnap Journalist Living in New York, Feds Say


NEW YORK, NY – OCTOBER 16: Journalist and Author Masih Alinejad speaks onstage during the WICT Leadership Conference at New York Marriott Marquis Hotel on October 16, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for Women in Cable Telecommunications)

Federal prosecutors have charged four Iranian operatives in an alleged plot to kidnap an Iranian-American journalist and author who lives in Brooklyn.

According to The New York Times, Iranian American journalist Masih Alinejad was the target of a kidnapping plot “orchestrated by an Iranian intelligence network.”

In an indictment unsealed in federal court in Manhattan, four Iranians were charged with conspiring to kidnap the journalist and author, Masih Alinejad, who has long been a staunch critic of the Iranian government…

The four defendants all live in Iran, the prosecutors said, identifying one of them, Alireza Shavaroghi Farahani, as an Iranian intelligence official and the three others as “Iranian intelligence assets.” A fifth defendant, accused of supporting the plot but not participating in the kidnapping conspiracy, was arrested in California.

Prosecutors said that Alinejad was under surveillance, which apparently included “the installation of and access to a live high-definition video feed of Victim-1’s home.”

In 2018, Alinejad wrote about being an outspoken journalist critical of the Iranian regime. She said, “As a journalist in Iran, I often got into trouble exposing the regime’s mismanagement and corruption until, eventually, my press pass was revoked. I was often threatened with arrest or worse for writing articles critical of former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Ultimately, I was forced to flee my homeland in 2009.”

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Josh Feldman is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: Follow him on Twitter: @feldmaniac