Iranian British Council worker jailed to 10 years for ‘spying’

Iranian British Council worker jailed to 10 years for ‘spying’

Tehran (Web Desk): An Iranian woman who worked for the British Council was sentenced to 10 years in prison for “spying”, the judiciary’s news website Mizan Online reported.

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

Esmaili added that the suspect, who had been tasked with drawing up and managing cultural “infiltration” projects, had been arrested by Iranian intelligence and security agencies “more than a year ago”.

The British Council is a cultural and educational organisation overseas but according to its website it is not “physically present” in Iran.

Iranian authorities shut down the British Council more than a decade ago for what Esmaili described as “illegal activities”.

Esmaili said that during her confession, the suspect described how she had been recruited and provided information on “the instructions that the English security agency had given” her.