The U.S. government revealed Tuesday it had stopped a plot by an Iranian agent to assassinate Saudi Arabia's U.S. ambassador. The suspected mastermind? A failed Texas used-car dealer who dubbed his mission "Chevrolet."
Mansour Arbabsiar, 56, was arraigned last Thursday after being arrested a week earlier in New York. The revelation of the plot — which involved Arbabsiar attempting to recruit a killer from a Mexican drug cartel to off Saudi ambassador Adel Al-Jubeir — has triggered an international diplomatic crisis, with several countries calling for tougher sanctions against Iran.
But according to the Corpus Christi Caller-Times, people who knew Arbabsiar describe him as a down-on-his-luck businessman who would do anything for a dollar, mostly. One associate says the two ran a used-car lot at the address shown above in Corpus Christi, until Arbabsiar stopped paying for his half of the business expenses. Another friend says Arbabsiar kept dealing cars privately, finding deals for people who sought him out.
And that deal-making was apparently caught on tape as Arbabsiar tried to buy an assassin's services, and with a conspirator in Iran discussing the purchase of their "Chevrolet," with the Iranian contact urging Arbabsiar to "just do it quickly." It's one Chevy most diplomats can be glad never got started.