The US Department of Justice has announced the sentencing of Seyed Sajjad Shahidian, the founder and CEO of financial services firm PAYMENT24, to 23 months in prison for collaborating with others to evade US sanctions. Shahidian, an Iranian citizen, pleaded guilty in June 2020 to one count of conspiracy to commit offenses against and to defraud the United States.
According to the evidence, PAYMENT24 helped customers located in Iran to make online purchases from US businesses. To effect these transactions, Shahidian obtained payment processing accounts in the US, and helped his customers use false passports and residency documents to demonstrate residence outside of Iran. Shahidian admitted to misrepresenting to US businesses the destination of US-origin goods, and causing the unauthorized export of goods, technology or services to Iran in violation of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act.