August 11, 2020
Two Iranians have been sentenced to 10-year prison terms on charges of spying for Israel, Germany and Britain, the website of the country’s judiciary reported on Tuesday.
The report quoted judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili identified the two men as Masoud Mosaheb, the co-chairman of the Iran-Austrian Friendship Society, and Shahram Shirkhani.
Mosaheb was accused of sharing information on “nuclear and missile projects” with Israel and the German intelligence service. Shirkhani allegedly spied for Britain, gathering “sensitive information” in Iran’s banking and defense sectors and tried to recruit government staff for his cause.
The judiciary spokesman, Esmaili, recently said that five employees of the foreign ministry, energy industries and companies had been detained. He did not elaborate at the time but Mosaheb and Shirkhani were not apparently arrested much earlier.
Iran occasionally arrests and convictions of those accused of spying on behalf of foreign countries, including the U.S. and Israel.
In July, Iran executed Reza Asgari, a former defense ministry employee convicted of spying on behalf of the Central Intelligence Agency, and also Mahmoud Mousavi Majd, a member of the Revolutionary Guard convicted of providing information to the United States and Israel about the top Guard general who was later killed in a U.S. drone strike in Baghdad in January
In June, Iran hanged Jalal Hajizavar, also a former staffer of the defense ministry, after he had admitted in court he was paid to spy for the CIA.
And in 2016, Iran executed a nuclear scientist convicted of spying for the United States.