WASHINGTON — The Justice Department on Friday charged three men with plotting to murder a Brooklyn-based Iranian-American dissident.
The latest case stems from the July arrest of 24-year-old Khalid Mehdiyev near Masih Alinejad’s residence with an assault rifle.
The other two men facing charges are Iran-based Rafat “Rome” Amirov, who was arrested on Jan. 26 in New York, and Polad “Haci Qaqa” Omarov, who was arrested in the Czech Republic on Jan. 4.
Amirov is allegedly a leader of an Eastern European criminal organization, while Omarov and Mehidyev are allegedly members of the European crime outfit.
The Justice Department gave top billing to the new charges with a rare DC press conference featuring Attorney General Merrick Garland, FBI Director Christopher Wray, and Manhattan US Attorney Damian Williams.
“The Organization has ties to Iran and is violent, engaging in murders, kidnappings, assaults, and extortions, and members typically identify themselves with tattoos and other displays of eight-pointed stars,” the DOJ said in a statement.
Five people were previously indicted in 2021 for allegedly attempting to kidnap Alinejad, a prominent advocate for women’s rights.
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