Iranian accused of spying for CIA will be executed 'soon,' official says

An Iranian man will “soon” be executed after being accused and convicted of sharing details on the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program with the CIA, a judiciary official announced Tuesday.

The declaration against Amir Rahimpour comes as judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili revealed that Iran has handed 15-year prison sentences to two other alleged spies for the CIA — 10 years for spying and five years for acting against national security.

“Amir Rahimpour, who was a CIA spy and got big pay out and tried to present part of Iran’s nuclear information to the American intelligence service, had been tried and sentenced to death and recently the Supreme Court upheld his sentence and you will see it carried out soon,” he reportedly told the Fars news agency.

Iran's Judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili gives a press conference in Tehran, Iran, on Tuesday.

Iran’s Judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili gives a press conference in Tehran, Iran, on Tuesday. (AP/Mizan News Agency)

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The CIA has not yet addressed the matter.

Esmaili did not name the others arrested, only saying they worked in the “charitable field,” without elaborating.

Iran in the past has sentenced alleged American and Israeli spies to death. The last such spy executed was Shahram Amiri, who defected to the U.S. at the height of Western efforts to thwart Iran’s nuclear program. When he returned in 2010, he was welcomed with flowers by government leaders and even went on the Iranian talk-show circuit. Then he mysteriously disappeared.

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He was hanged in August 2016, the same week that Tehran executed a group of militants and a year after Iran agreed to a landmark accord to limit uranium enrichment in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions.

Tensions remain high between Iran and the U.S. since President Trump unilaterally withdrew America from Tehran’s nuclear deal. A U.S. drone strike in January killed Iranian Revolutionary Guard Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad, prompting Tehran to retaliate with a ballistic missile strike on Iraqi bases housing American troops.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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