“US ARRESTS IRANIANS FROM TEXAS FOR MONEY LAUNDERING”
Thursday January 06, 2011 >
WANTED SA has learned this morning that a couple accused of violating the U.S. embargo against Iran in a money laundering and tax fraud scheme pleaded not guilty Tuesday.
Dr. Hossein Lahiji and Najmeh Vahid appeared in Federal Court in the Portland, Oregon headquarters of the Child Foundation, a charity that federal prosecutors say was the conduit for $1.8 million from the two.
Lahiji, a urologist, and Vahid, a lawyer, are from McAllen, Texas. They were released after the brief hearing Tuesday.
The couple got tax breaks, but retained control of the money, some of it going into Iranian investments, and some of it split with Ayatollah Nasser Makarem Shirazi, according to an indictment handed up in December.
Also indicted was Ahmad Iranshahi, a cousin of the former president of the Child Foundation, Mehrdad Yesrebi, who formed the organization in 1994. Iranshahi is described in court documents, as a resident of Iran who handled a sister charity and conveyed money into Iran.
WANTED SA has also learned that several individuals in Canada are also under investigation for the same offenses and also for theft of monies from investors in Iran.
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