UK sanctions Iran’s prosecutor general over execution of British-Iranian national

Mr Akbari, 61, a former Iranian deputy defence minister, was arrested in 2019 and accused of working with MI6.

Iran announced on Saturday that he had been hanged, but did not say when. His family in Iran had travelled to see him for a final time before the sentence was carried out. 

“Alireza Akbari, who was sentenced to death on charges of corruption on earth and extensive action against the country’s internal and external security through espionage for the British Government’s intelligence service… was executed,” the Mizan news agency said.

Mr Cleverly said this week that the charges against Mr Akbari were “politically motivated” and had called for his immediate release. 

Mizan accused Mr Akbari of receiving payments of €1,805,000, £265,000, and $50,000 for spying.

Iranian state media also broadcast a video on Thursday that they said showed he had played a role in the assassination of Iran’s top nuclear scientist, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, in a 2020 attack, which authorities blamed on Israel at the time.

In the video, Mr Akbari did not confess to involvement in the assassination, but said a British agent had asked for information about Mr Fakhrizadeh.

Iran’s state media often airs purported confessions by suspects in politically charged cases.

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