Prosecutors said Shahram Poursafi, a 45-year-old Iranian citizen and IRGC member, tried to pay $300,000 to a person in the United States to kill Bolton and said he had a “second job” for $1 million.
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was also a target of the Iranian assassination plot, according to a federal law enforcement source familiar with the investigation and a source close to Pompeo. The “second job” was a reference to Pompeo, the source close to Pompeo said.
Pompeo, a well-known hawk of Iranian policy, served as Trump’s secretary of state at the time of the airstrike that killed Soleimani. He was informed directly by the Justice Department last Wednesday that he was the second target of an IRGC assassination plot, the source close to Pompeo told DailyExpertNews.
Poursafi, who has not been arrested and is still at large, originally contacted the US-based individual — who was secretly working as an FBI informant, also known as a “confidential human source,” or CHS — and asked them to take photos of Bolton “for a book Poursafi was writing,” according to court documents.
He later asked if the informant could hire a person to “eliminate someone,” who was later revealed as Bolton, promising protection for the CHS and the killer, prosecutors said. Poursafi is also alleged to have suggested the murder should be done “by car”, gave the CHS an address for Bolton’s office and noted that Bolton was in the habit of walking alone.
In November 2021, the informant traveled to Washington, DC, and sent Poursafi photos of Bolton’s office and descriptions of the building. Poursafi reportedly said the murder was supposed to take place in the garage of the building because it was a high-traffic area.
Poursafi has been charged with using interstate trade facilities to commit contract murder, which carries a maximum prison sentence of 10 years, and for providing material support to a transnational murder plot, which carries up to 15 years in prison. jail.
‘Embarrassed at the low price’
“While not much can be said publicly at this point, one point is indisputable: Iran’s rulers are liars, terrorists and enemies of the United States,” he said. “Their radical, anti-American objectives are unchanged; their obligations are worthless; and their global threat is growing.”
Speaking to DailyExpertNews’s Wolf Blitzer on Wednesday night about “The Situation Room,” Bolton joked that he was “embarrassed by the low price” allegedly offered to kill him.
The former national security adviser said he had “long had a general understanding of what the threat was” from Iran, but learned many of the details of the assassination plot from documents released by the Justice Department earlier in the day.
“I think it’s very correct to say that a lot of other Americans are being targeted by this regime. It tells you what the regime is. It tells you about its character,” Bolton said.
“Frankly, from my point of view, the regime’s terrorist activities are just the other side of its nuclear weapons program, and any idea that this regime will stick to its obligations is just a horribly delusional,” Bolton told Blitzer .
Bolton said he didn’t know Pompeo was also targeted, but he wasn’t surprised.
“I think there is a significant number of people who are vulnerable to these Iranian efforts. And unfortunately, I fear we will learn more from them,” he said.
Pompeo, who was also a CIA director under Trump, has been given continuous security since the end of the Trump administration due to threats from Iran, the source close to him said.
Former Ambassador Jim Jeffrey, who served as Special Representative to Syria and Special Envoy to the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS under Pompeo, said that “Pompeo was central to the Trump administration’s strategy and the implementation of Iran policy as” CIA director and secretary of state.
Jeffrey said that “given (the) record of Iranian murders in Europe and aborted murders there and here,” including the failed plot against the former Saudi foreign minister in a DC restaurant in 2011, “the threats should be taken seriously. “
Multiple current and former US officials continue to receive significant personal security from Iran’s IRGC threats, according to a source directly familiar with all those protected. The security is provided by the US government, the source said.
There are multiple IRGC plots still under investigation, the source said, including threats against senior military leaders that could be considered equivalents to Soleimani.
The IRGC has targeted assassination, but there are competing factions within the organization trying to carry out various plots. The plot with Bolton is just one element, the source noted.
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani said on Wednesday that the “Islamic Republic of Iran strongly warns against any action against Iranian citizens under the pretense of these ridiculous charges and emphasizes that it reserves the right to take action in the under international law to defend the rights” of government and citizens, according to state news IRNA.
This story was updated on Wednesday with additional developments.
DailyExpertNews’s Paul LeBlanc, Barbara Starr, Hamdi Alkhshali, Josh Campbell and Veronica Stracqualursi contributed to this report.