Oregon Charity Used Small MSBs, Swiss Banks to Circumvent Iran Sanctions, Says DOJ

By Colby Adams

A Portland, OR-based charity used small money services businesses, false invoices and Swiss bank accounts to funnel $1.8 million to Iran in violation of U.S. sanctions, according to federal prosecutors. Between 1998 and 2007, the Child Foundation conspired with a Texas couple, Hossein Lahiji and Najmeh Vahid, and an Iran-based accomplice, Ahmad Iranshahi, to send donations to the organization to Child Foundation Iran, a sister organization also known as Refah Kudak, according to a Dec. 15 indictment brought by the U.S. Justice Department. Raised by Lahiji and Vahid for children in Iran, Indonesia and Afghanistan, the donations went almost entirely...