WASHINGTON, June 18 (UPI) -- An Iranian national pleaded guilty in an Alabama court to attempting to export military aircraft parts to Iran in violation of trade embargoes, Washington said.
Iranian national Omid Khalili and a co-defendant identified as "Masun" were charged in January in a nine-count indictment of conspiracy, money laundering, smuggling, as well as violations of the Arms Export Control Act and the International Emergency Economic Powers Act.
Khalili told the court he was working with the Iranian government to obtain parts used in military aircraft in Iran.
The U.S. Justice Department said the parts were replacements for parts used in military aircraft sold by the United States to Iran before diplomatic ties were severed in 1979.
"The parts requested by the defendants are designated as defense articles on the U.S. Munitions List and may not be exported from the United States without a license from the U.S. State Department," the Justice Department said in a statement
Khalili and "and other co-conspirators" allegedly arranged to send an undercover agent four cash payments totaling $70,000 from an Emirati bank to a bank in Alabama as a down payment for the aircraft parts, the Justice Department added.
He faces a maximum 10 years in prison and a $1 million fine if convicted. His co-conspirator, Masun, remains at large.