Iranian journalist and activist Masih Alinejad called the Iranian government to ‘go to hell’ on Monday after claiming the country’s regime was responsible for sending a man armed with a loaded AK-47 into his Brooklyn neighborhood.
In an on-camera interview with CNN, Alinejad said in a direct message to the Iranian regime, “Go to hell.” ‘I’m not afraid of you. I only have one life. You care about power – I care about my dignity – and freedom like millions of people inside Iran.’
Khalid Mehdiyev, 23, was found hidden in his car Thursday with an assault rifle, high-capacity magazines and more than $1,000 in cash, according to a federal complaint.
Mehdiyev had been living outside the journalist’s Brooklyn home for two days in his gray Subaru Forester SUV with Illinois license plates before he was caught on Alinejad’s ring camera footage, which showed the 23-year-old loitering on his porch.
‘I’m not scared [for] My life is because I know what I’m doing,’ said Alinejad. “I have only one life, and I have dedicated my life to giving a voice to the Iranian people inside Iran, who bravely take to the streets, face guns and bullets against the Iranian regime, but this is happening in America. This is happening [for the] the second time. They try to kill, kill and kidnap American citizens [on] American soil.’
Police are investigating why Mehdiyev left Alinezad’s house.
Iranian journalist and activist Masih Alinazad appeared on CNN to discuss a man arrested outside his Brooklyn home Thursday who allegedly found an assault rifle, a high-capacity magazine, and more than $1,000 in cash hidden in his car.
23-year-old Khalid Mehdiyev was seen on ring camera footage. Alinejad shared footage of the 23-year-old hiding on her Brooklyn porch on Twitter.
Mahdiyev was out of Alinejad’s house for a few days before his arrest. Police found an AK-47 rifle in his car
Alinejad, 45, told CNN that the Iranian regime has been targeting her family for constantly speaking out about freedom and women’s rights in Iran, particularly as some women seek to lose the traditional hijab.
‘First, they put my brother in prison to punish me,’ Alinejad said. ‘Secondly, they brought my sister on TV to disown me publicly. Third, questioned my mother for hours and asked me to take her to Turkey.’
He added, ‘Then they arrested all these women and brought me on TV to publicly disown me.’
Alinejad described how the Iranian regime targeted her family in an attempt to combat her efforts for women’s rights and freedom in the country.
Alinejad raised his voice against corruption in the Iranian government. Anti-government protesters are seen outside the Iranian embassy in Berlin in January 2020
Alinejad was targeted in a 2021 kidnapping plot before being rescued by the FBI. On July 13, four Iranian intelligence officers abducted him from his home in Brooklyn and took him to a safe house after learning that they planned to take him to Venezuela on a speedboat.
“When I was here last year, the FBI announced that they had busted a kidnapping plot,” she told CNN. ‘I was like OK – I’m safe – finally – I’m going to enjoy my freedom in America to give a voice to the voiceless people inside Iran. But now a few days ago I was told that I had to leave my house because this time a man was in front of my house with a gun to kill me.’
It was later revealed that private investigators had been hired to shoot footage of Alinezad and her family around her Brooklyn home.
Four suspects – Alireza Shahwaroghi Farahani, Mahmoud Khazen, Omid Nouri and Kia Sadeghiwere – were identified in the kidnapping plot as the FBI tried to arrest them as they fled back to Iran.
A fifth suspect, Nilofar Bahadurifar, accused of financing the plot but not participating in the kidnapping plot, was later arrested in California.
Iranian officials have denied the kidnapping allegations.
Before ending her interview with CNN, Elinzad left a message for President Joe Biden and his administration.
“Shut down the Islamic Republic… expel all Iranian diplomats,” she said. ‘Why [are] Are they here? The Iranian regime twice challenged the US government on US soil. I deserve freedom in the United States. Take them out. If you don’t, believe me, they will come after many American citizens.’
Mahmoud Khazen (left) and Omid Nouri (right) are among four Iranians charged in the kidnapping plot.
Kia Sadeghi (left) is accused of being an asset working for Iranian spy chief, Alireza Shahvaroghi Farahani (right).
Alinejad was linked to a kidnapping plot in 2021. The FBI moved him to various safe houses and later revealed that his captors planned to smuggle him into Venezuela.
Alinejad speculates that Mehdiyev was alienated from the Iranian regime’s plans. The 23-year-old arrived on July 27 on the streets of Elainezad, Brooklyn.
He was spotted returning to the road a day later, and sat in his car for hours.
‘Mehdiyev behaved suspiciously during that time: among other things, he got out of the Subaru several times and ordered food to be delivered to the Subaru, approached the residence, tried to look inside the windows of the residence and tried to open them. front door of the residence,’ Special Agent David Casey wrote in his report.
According to Casse, police discovered Mehdiyev after running a stop sign on July 28 and discovered he was driving with a suspended license.
Documents by the NYPD revealed that Mehdiyev was issued a parking ticket on the same Brooklyn street on July 23 — before cops found a gun and money inside his car and took him into custody.
Mehdiyev told investigators that he was trying to knock on the front door of Alinezad’s house to inquire about the room for rent, but decided to run for fear of being woken up by someone. He said thousands of dollars in cash were intended for hotel rooms.
He denied knowledge of a gun found in his car before admitting ownership.
He later said he was in Brooklyn ‘because he was looking for someone.’
Mehdiyev drove his gray Subaru Forester SUV with an Illinois license plate on the streets of Brooklyn for days. He was arrested by the police on July 27th last for indicating that he had stopped. He was arrested for driving with an expired license and received a parking ticket while parking on the same Brooklyn street on July 23.
Mehdiyev told the police that he had gone to Alinezad Street to ask about a room to rent. He said he ran away from the house for fear of waking up the residents
Alinejad’s criticism of Iran
July 2018, New York Times:
“As a journalist in Iran, I often got into trouble for exposing regime mismanagement and corruption until, my press pass was revoked.
‘I was often threatened with arrest or worse for writing articles critical of former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
‘Finally in 2009 I was forced to flee my homeland.’
July 2020, Voice of America:
“I call on the leaders of European countries to join the United States in condemning not only Iran’s hostage-taking, but also the recent executions of its prisoners.”
August 2020, The Washington Post:
‘The regime’s brutal treatment of women is its biggest weakness, and my focus on related injustices is why I continue to be targeted.’