WASHINGTON (LTN) — The Justice Department announced on Wednesday that an Iranian agent had been charged with a plot to kill former US national security adviser John Bolton in alleged retaliation for an American airstrike that killed the nation’s most powerful general. The agent had offered $300,000 to “eliminate” the Trump administration official.
The FBI is currently looking for Shahram Poursafi, who was identified by American officials as a member of Iran’s paramilitary Revolutionary Guard, on suspicion of participating in the murder-for-hire plot.
Prosecutors claim that the plan came together more than a year after Qassem Soleimani, the leader of the Revolutionary Guard’s elite Quds Force and the mastermind of Tehran’s Middle East proxy conflicts, was assassinated in a targeted airstrike in January 2020 while leaving Baghdad’s international airport.
Bolton, who had left his position in the White House by then, tweeted following the strike, expressing his hope that this would be the start of regime change in Tehran.
According to an affidavit released on Wednesday, the FBI believes Poursafi was attempting to have Bolton killed on behalf of the Revolutionary Guard. Law enforcement officials used images of Poursafi wearing fatigues and with background posters of Iran and Soleimani to support their claim that he is a member of the Revolutionary Guard in uniform.
The plot, according to the Justice Department, began in the fall of 2021 when Poursafi, 45, an Iranian national who, according to officials, has never been to the country, contacted an unknown person he met on social media who happened to be a resident of the country.