A terror plot of the Iranian government to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the U.S. in Washington has been revealed to press yesterday.
Attorney General Eric Holder spoke during a press conference of how elements of the Iranian government financed and aided the plot to murder Adel al-Jubeir , the Saudi ambassador in US- offering a bounty of $1.5 million to the plotters.
Two persons have been charged with the plot, according to the authorities; Manssor Arbabsiar, a 56-year-old U.S. citizen who also holds an Iranian passport and Gholam Shakuri, whom it said to be a member of the Iranian regime’s hard core “Quds Force”.
It was reported that when asked by undercover agents about the potential loss of innocent life in the bombings, Manssor Arbabsiar replied:
“They want that guy [al-Jubeir] done.
“If the hundred go with him, f**k ’em.”
Attorney General Eric Holder said: “The criminal complaint unsealed today exposes a deadly plot directed by factions of the Iranian government to assassinate a foreign Ambassador on U.S. soil with explosives.
“Through the diligent and coordinated efforts of our law enforcement and intelligence agencies, we were able to disrupt this plot before anyone was harmed.
“We will continue to investigate this matter vigorously and bring those who have violated any laws to justice.”
According to US Justice Department, from the spring of 2011 to October 2011, Manssor Arbabsiar and his Iran-based co-conspirators, including Shakuri of the Quds Force, had been plotting the murder of the Saudi Ambassador.
Manssor Arbabsiar was said to have unknowingly hired informant from the Drug Enforcement Administration to carry out the plot.
The informant [CS-1], who was posing as a member of a Mexican drug cartel, met with Manssor Arbabsiar several times in Mexico.
Manssor Arbabsiar was said to have first met with CS-1 in Mexico on May 24, 2011, inquiring informant’s knowledge of explosives before explaining that he was interested in, among other things, attacking an embassy of Saudi Arabia.
According to the charges, CS-1 allegedly indicated he had knowledge of using C-4 explosives.
Manssor Arbabsiar has returned to Mexico in June and July 2011 where he held additional meetings with CS-1.
In a July 14, 2011, they had another meeting in Mexico and CS-1 allegedly told Manssor Arbabsiar that he would need to use four men to carry out the Ambassador’s murder and that his price for carrying out the murder was $1.5 million.
Manssor Arbabsiar then offered a $100,000 down payment and during the same meeting, he boasted to CS-1 his cousin in Iran – a “big general” in the Iranian military, as Arbabsiar said – had knowledge of the attack.
In July 17, Manssor Arbabsiar and CS-1 met again, with the informant saying one of his men had already carried out surveillance of the ambassador.
On August 1, and August 9, 2011, with Gholam Shakuri’s approval, Manssor Arbabsiar allegedly made two overseas wire transfers “totalling approximately $100,000” that prosecutors say were sent to an FBI undercover account.
After the informant then demanded a further down payment, Manssor Arbabsiar flew to Mexico to act as a guarantee the fee would be paid.
After being refused entry to Mexico on September 28, Arbabsiar was returned to New York’s JFK airport, where he was arrested by federal agents on September 29.
Iran’s secretive Quds Force is an elite brigade within Iran’s revolutionary Guard.
The Guards, with their own navy, air force and command structure separate from the regular armed forces, are seen as fiercely loyal to the supreme leader.
Within the Guards, Quds are tasked with “exporting” the Iranian revolution abroad.
The Quds Force, which is said to contain 15,000 troops, is accused of operations in Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon, North Africa and now North America.
In the past, the U.S. has accused Quds of arming Iraqi militants with deadly bomb-making material, building up an extensive network in the war-torn country, recruiting Iraqis and supporting not only Shiite militias but also Shiites allied with Washington.