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Brother Of Iranian VP Sentenced To Two Years In Prison For 'Currency Smuggling'

Mehdi Jahangiri is the brother of Iranian Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri. (file photo)

Iran has sentenced the brother of First Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri to two years in prison on finance-related charges.

Judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili said on January 26 that charges against Mehdi Jahangiri included "currency smuggling" in the amount of $847,200.

He was ordered to return the funds and fined four times the amount in question, Esmaili said, adding that the verdict was final and cannot be appealed.

Jahangiri was on the board of the Tehran Chamber of Commerce and is also the founder of the private Gardeshgari Bank.

He was arrested in October 2017 and released on bail in March 2018.

At the time of his arrest, his brother wrote on Instagram that the move was "predictable" and that he hoped it was not a case of political "abuse."

In October 2019, President Hassan Rohani's brother Hossein Fereidoun was sentenced to five years in prison on corruption and bribery charges.

Fereidoun has denied any wrongdoing and accused hard-liners who dominate the Iranian judiciary of trying to discredit him by obtaining evidence through "illegally intercepting communications of the office of the president."

Tensions between Rohani and Iranian hard-liners have escalated since the United States pulled out of the 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers and stepped up economic sanctions on Iran.

With reporting by AP