Curious timing for the "news" release, since the alleged arrests took place late September
Iranians charged in U.S. over assassination plot
U.S. authorities broke up an alleged plot to bomb the Israeli and Saudi Arabian embassies in Washington and assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United States, court documents and a U.S. official said on Tuesday.
The alleged plotters were identified as Manssor Arbabsiar and Gholam Shakuri -- both originally from Iran -- in the criminal complaint unsealed in federal court in New York City.
Arbabsiar, a naturalized U.S. citizen, was arrested in late September. Shakuri is still at large.
The plot was disrupted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Drug Enforcement Administration.
U.S. officials said one overarching question is whether elements of the Iranian government were behind the plot. Court documents identified Shakuri as a member of the Quds Force, a branch of the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.
Shakuri approved the plan to try to kill the Saudi ambassador during telephone conversations with Arbabsiar, the complaint said.
In July and August, Arbabsiar paid $100,000 to a DEA informant for the murder of Saudi ambassador Adel Al-Jubeir, court documents said.
Arbabsiar was arrested late last month at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport. After his arrest, court papers said, Arbabsiar confessed to authorities.
The men are charged with one count of conspiracy to murder a foreign official, two counts of foreign travel and use of interstate and foreign commerce facilities in the commission of murder for hire and one count each of conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction and conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism.
And another one, with a twist- Iran behind plot to kill Saudi ambassador, U.S. says
The Justice Department on Tuesday accused agents of the Iranian government of being involved in a plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United States, with help from a purported member of a Mexican drug cartel.
Attorney General Eric Holder said the U.S. would hold Iran accountable.
FBI Director Robert Mueller says many lives could have been lost in the plot to kill the ambassador with bombs in the U.S. Holder said the U.S. government would be taking unspecified action against the Iranian government as early as Tuesday.
Is this story being released now to justify a move against Iran?
Arbabsiar unknowingly hired an informant from the Drug Enforcement Administration to carry out the plot, prosecutors said.
Posing as a member of a Mexican drug cartel, the informant met with Arbabsiar several times in Mexico, authorities said. The price tag was $1.5 million and Arabsiar made a $100,000 down payment.
Bharara said no explosives were actually placed, and no one wasin any danger.
Shakuri remains at large. Arbabsiar was arrested Sept. 29 at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport. He was scheduled to appear in federal court Tuesday. Prosecutors said he faces up to life in prison if convicted.
Prosecutors said Arbabsiar has confessed to his participation in the murder plot.
Curious and Curiouser?
He was "first briefed on the plot in June" means what?
Exactly how was Obama briefed? Of the initiation of the plot? The set up? What? Mr President, we have this here patsy and we are going to do this.... Yah, we can set up Iran, it's perfect! That'll fix them for holding onto the spies.. Oops I mean hikers. The ones that are most likely dual citizens with Israel and were spying. But, I digress
Plot in June. Arrests in September. New release in mid October.