Feds Seize Mosques, Properties From Alleged Iranian Controlled Foundation

November 13, 2009

(ChattahBox) — The Feds moved to seize the assets of a nonprofit Muslim organization with suspected ties to the Iranian government – including a New York skyscraper and four mosques. The Alavi Foundation, which is part of the alleged front company Assa Corp., is being asked to forfeit all of their U.S. properties, totaling $500 million in assets in a a new complaint from a 2008 lawsuit.

The original case, which sought to seize the interest in the 36-story New York office tower, held by ASSA Co., a company based in the U.K.’s Channel Islands, claimed the Iranian government’s state-owned Bank Melli co- owned the building through ASSA.  The new complaint  alleges the Alavi foundation is laundering money back to Bank Melli, whom the U.S. has outlawed doing business because of its suspected role in Iran’s nuclear program. The foundation provides imprisoned Muslims in the U.S. with educational literature and support for Iranian academics. Prosecutors alleged that Iran’s ambassador to the United Nations has controlled the Alavi Foundation since 1991.

“As today’s complaint alleges in great detail, the Alavi Foundation has effectively been a front for the Government of Iran,” U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said in a statement. “For two decades, the Alavi Foundation’s affairs have been directed by various Iranian officials, including Iranian ambassadors to the United Nations, in violation of a series of American laws.”
This is a rare instance in which a religious place of worship has been seized in the U.S., because of the First Amendment right to religious freedom. Last year, the president of the foundation, Farhsid Jahedi, was arrested and accused by U.S. prosecutors of destroying documents.

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2 Responses to “Feds Seize Mosques, Properties From Alleged Iranian Controlled Foundation”

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    […] (chattahbox) — The Feds moved to seize the assets of a nonprofit Muslim organization with suspected ties to the Iranian government – including a New York skyscraper and four mosques. The Alavi Foundation, which is part of the alleged front company Assa …Read Original Story: Feds Seize Mosques, Properties From Alleged Iranian Controlled Foundation &#821… […]

  2. About iran mosques, prosecutors, seize mosques, foundation, york skyscraper, seize skyscraper | Find me About on November 13th, 2009 6:03 pm

    […] (ChattahBox) — The Feds moved to seize the assets of a nonprofit Muslim organization with suspected ties to the Iranian government – including a New York skyscraper and four mosques. The Alavi Foundation, which is part of the alleged front company Assa …Read Original Story: Feds Seize Mosques, Properties From Alleged Iranian Controlled Foundation &#821… […]

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