Bijan Rafiekian, a former business partner of ex-US national security adviser Michael Flynn, has been charged by federal prosecutors with illegally lobbying for the extradition of Turkish dissident Fethullah Gulen, whom Ankara accuses of having masterminded the July 2016 coup attempt against the Turkish leader.
Bijan Rafiekian, who also goes by the name Bijan Kian, was arrested and appeared in federal court in Alexandria, Virginia on Monday. He was charged with two counts including failing to register as a foreign agent.
Kamil Ekim Alptekin, another associate of Flynn, has also been charged.
Rafiekian was vice-chairman of Flynn’s business group, the Flynn Intel Group, where he supervised much of the group’s foreign political work for the Turkish interests, the indictment revealed. Rafjekian and Alptekin worked in 2016 to seek ways to have Gulen returned from the US to Turkey.
According to court documents, the two men “conspired covertly…