US doc admits to sending money to Iran

Transfer of $4 million violates US trade and investment embargo against Iran.

money 88 (photo credit: )
money 88
(photo credit: )
A physician admitted that he illegally sent $4 million to his native Iran over a four-year period. Dr. Mohammad Anvari-Hamedani, 72, of Fostoria, Ohio, entered guilty pleas Monday in US District Court to 36 counts of money laundering and making illegal money transfers to Iran. In exchange for his plea, two of the counts were dropped and the Justice Department will recommend that Anvari-Hamedani be sentenced to a maximum of three years and ten months in prison. A message seeking comment was left Tuesday for Anvari-Hamedani's attorney Brad Hubbell. The United States has a trade embargo against Iran and bars new investments from people in the United States. Federal officials have said there is no evidence that the money was destined for terrorist groups or the Iranian government. Some of the financial transfers were to help build a conference center at a university in Tehran. A search of Anvari-Hamedani's home in 2002 turned up evidence that suggested his strong support for the current Islamic government in Iran and the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, according to the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Authorities said most of the fund transfers occurred from 1998 to 2001.