Also Known As:
Mohammed Akhavan Nik
- Ascot, Berkshire
- Redwood House, Ascot
- The Covert, Ascot, Berkshire
Arrested by HM Revenue and Customs officers in August 2007, along with his father Mohsen Akhavan Nik, in connection with a plot to export restricted military equipment, including aircraft components and equipment, from the United States via the United Kingdom, Romania, and Hong Kong to Iran in violation of a 1993 UK embargo on military exports to Iran; Nik, his father, and co-defendant Nithish Jaitha were charged with two counts of conspiring to evade the prohibition on the export and movement of goods contrary to the UK Criminal Law Act 1977.
Between December 2005 and August 2007, asked Jaitha to source parts from the United States for delivery to Iran; restricted items requested by Iranian contacts included a range of parts required for military jets, including liquid oxygen cylinders, military radios and transceivers, helicopter engine transmissions and electric drive motors to power 20mm 'Gatling type' cannons; items were sourced in the United States (including on eBay), often first shipped to a Florida address set up by the Niks, then typically exported with misleading descriptions to Iran via the UK, Romania or Hong Kong, in order to circumvent U.S. export controls; even after interceptions of their liquid oxygen converter shipments by Customs authorities in the United States, United Kingdom and Romania, the Niks and Jaitha continued to order parts and ship them to Iran by using false identities and front companies.
The Niks reportedly also used their companies Nix Aviation Ltd and Vanero Ltd to buy parts from Oxford-based Aerospace Support International (ASI), in which Jaitha was a partner; by the time of their arrest, the Niks had received over Â£500,000 for aircraft parts that had been sent to Iran; on June 4, 2009, after a trial at Southwark Crown Court, Mohammad Akhavan Nik was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison for count one and eighteen months for count two, to run concurrently; left Iran in 1995 and was granted political asylum in the UK; born on June 2, 1982.