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Man jailed for spying on Iran International TV channel in London to help terror plotters | UK News

A Chechen-born man has been jailed after being found guilty of spying on a London-based dissident Iranian TV station to help terror plotters.

Magomed-Husejn Dovtaev, 31, was accused of conducting surveillance on the west London headquarters of Iran International as part of a plan by others to carry out a terror attack.

He was found guilty of one charge of attempting to collect information useful for terrorism this week.

Magomed-Husejn Dovtaev
Magomed-Husejn Dovtaev

Dovtaev was sentenced to three years and six months at the Old Bailey on Friday. He will have to serve two-thirds of the sentence, minus the time he has already spent in custody.

Asked why he had taken an interest in the Chiswick Business Park building and its surroundings, he told the Old Bailey he “quite simply liked it” and was “in wonder at the architecture”.

Prosecutors said Dovtaev, an Austrian citizen, originally from Chechnya, covertly filmed material on his phone in order to “identify vulnerabilities” in the media company’s security which could be exploited by others.

The court heard the TV station had been critical of the Iranian government for years and publicly accused it of human rights violations.

Dovtaev denied the charges, telling the court he was “set up” by an unknown contact.

He told the jury he did not know why he had been sent to Chiswick Business Park – then home to Iran International’s headquarters – and that he felt he had been tricked by his contact, whose identity he did not know.

Giving evidence in his defence, Dovtaev admitted he had taken a video on his phone in the middle of the business park.

He told the court: “You have got these buildings and in the middle of it you have got the lake and I was in wonder of such architecture, I quite simply liked it.”

Prosecutors said they were not suggesting Dovtaev himself aimed to carry out or participate in an attack on the building or its staff.

The court heard Dovtaev…

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This notice was published: 2023-12-22 10:47:00

By Sky News

Sky News is a British 24-hour information television channel, the first in Europe of its kind, launched on February 5, 1989 by the British Sky Broadcasting Company.

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