Defendant's Position with Respect to the Sentencing of Seyed Sajjad Shahidian

September 23, 2020

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Seyed “Soheil” Sajjad Shahidian knew that his company evaded U.S. export laws with Iran. Much of Iran is aware of the U.S. sanctions but the citizens rely on companies like Mr. Shahidian’s to overcome trade restrictions so they can enjoy goods from overseas. Mr. Shahidian like entrepreneurs before and after him, wanted to give himself and Iranian citizens a way around the sanctions. He knew his actions were illegal but did not recognize the consequences. In fact, he was on an Iranian news program promoting his company, Payment24, and did not deny that his company evaded the sanctions. As many before him, he thought as long as he did not interfere with oil, the military or religion, he would not be punished for his actions. But, he has been punished. While on his honeymoon in London, Mr. Shahidian was arrested on a Federal Criminal Complaint on November 11, 2018. He was detained, and later voluntary agreed to come to the United States to face prosecution. Soon thereafter, he entered a plea guilty to Conspiracy to Defraud and Commit Offenses Against the United States.