A court in the United States has ordered the Iranian government to pay more than $1.4 billion to the family of a former FBI agent who disappeared during a visit to an Iranian island in March 2007.
The court which ruled out on Wednesday October 7th, 2020, stated that the money is to be paid as punitive and compensatory damages.
US District Judge Timothy Kelly said that he had adopted a special expert’s recommendation that Robert Levinson’s family be awarded $107 million in compensatory damages.
The judge then awarded punitive damages of $1.3 billion.
The Levinson family whom welcomed the court’s ruling said, “The judgment is the first step in the pursuit of justice for Robert Levinson, an American patriot, who was kidnapped and subjected to unimaginable suffering for more than 13 years.”
“Until now, Iran has faced no consequences for its actions. Judge Kelly’s decision won’t bring Bob home, but we hope that it will serve as a warning against further hostage-taking by Iran,” they added.
Earlier this year, the Levinson family said they “believed he had died in Iranian custody, based on information from US officials. However, Iran denied this and said the former US FBI agent left the country years ago.”
Levinson disappeared after traveling from Dubai to the Iranian-controlled Kish island in the Gulf in March 2007.
There he met David Salahuddin, an American militant, who fled to Iran after committing murder.