US charity, man plead guilty in Iran embargo

PORTLAND, Oregon — A charity based in Portland and its founder have pleaded guilty to federal conspiracy charges involving an alleged violation of a US embargo against Iran.
Federal prosecutors said Monday that 53-year-old Mehrdad Yasrebi founded the tax-exempt charity Child Foundation in 1994 and served as its chief executive until his resignation last year.
Yasrebi and the charity were charged with conspiring with Ahmad Iranshahi and a Texas couple, Dr. Hossein Lahiji and Najmeh Vahid, who face separate charges.
Yasrebi and the Child Foundation were accused of conspiring to defraud the Office of Foreign Assets Control, the federal agency enforcing the Iranian embargo.
Prosecutors said Yasrebi helped transfer funds to Iran and exaggerate charitable tax deductions.