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Prisoners

US Veteran and Ex-Hostage Michael White Suing Iran for $1bn

March 18, 2022
1 min read
US Veteran and Ex-Hostage Michael White Suing Iran for $1bn

U.S. Navy veteran and former hostage Michael White is suing the Iranian government for US$1 billion. The Californian was released in a prisoner swap in June 2020 after being held and tortured for nearly two years.

In the federal lawsuit filed in Washington D.C. on Thursday, White’s lawyers stated that he endured “prolonged” abuse from prison guards and interrogators throughout his time in captivity. The cancer survivor was beaten and punched, whipped on the soles of his feet and deprived of food and water.

The 31-page complaint also states that White was abducted by the Iranian regime. He was “lured” to the country in summer 2018, he said, by a woman he thought was his girlfriend , then arrested on arrival. He was charged with “insulting the Supreme Leader” and spying on behalf of the US, to which he gave a forced, false confession under torture, and sentenced to 10 years in prison in summer 2019.

White’s lawyers are clear that their client was a hostage, held to “manufacture additional leverage for diplomacy” with the Trump administration after the US withdrawal from the JCPOA. He was finally exchanged for a cosmetic surgeon, Dr. Matteo Taerri, who was arrested in the US in 2018 for violating American restrictions on exports to Iran.

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