Iranian British Council worker sentenced to 10 years for spying for UK

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An Iranian man who worked for the British Council was sentenced to 10 years in prison for “spying”, the judiciary’s news website Mizan Online reported Monday.

“An Iranian citizen in charge of the Iran desk at the English cultural council called British Council was cooperating with English spying agencies,” it said quoting judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili.

He did not say when the sentence was handed down and did not identify the suspect who “had made a straightforward confession and was sentenced to 10 years by the court.”

Esmaili said the person who was sentenced was in charge of projects for “cultural infiltration” in Iran.

The British Foreign Office did not immediately respond to an email requesting comment. The British Council is Britain’s cultural agency overseas.

The arrest of Iranians accused of espionage has increased since Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said last year there had been “infiltration” of Western agents in the country.

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