Iran arrests leader of militant California-based opposition group

Iran arrests leader of militant California-based opposition groupIran says it has detained the leader of a California-based militant group that is accused of being behind a deadly attack on a mosque in 2008. Iran’s intelligence ministry claims Jamshid Sharmahd is the head of “Tondor”, the militant wing of the Kingdom Assembly of Iran, an opposition monarchist group based in the US. It is not clear how the California-based 65 year old, who Iran claims directed armed and terrorist acts in Iran from the US, was arrested. The 2008 bombing killed 14 people and wounded more than 200. The intelligence ministry called his arrest a “complex operation” without elaborating further. They later published a photo on their website of a blindfolded man they say is Mr Sharmahd. The US State Department said that Mr Shamahd had previously been targeted for assassination. The alleged Iranian government operative who was said to have hired a hit man to kill Mr Sharmahd was due to face trial in California but disappeared in 2010, likely having returned to Iran.

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