Man Tried for Murder-for-hire Plot Wins After Alleging Entrapment by Rogue Government Snitch

The suburban dads met at a Chili's restaurant in Frisco. But they were not there to chat about their kids, who attended the same school. The neighbors discussed the hiring of a hitman named "Iceman" who worked for a Mexican drug cartel. The job: Kidnap a former business partner and force him at gunpoint to sign away his rights to a gas station, according to federal court records. That March 2018 meeting was a key event in the federal kidnapping case against Eskandar Molavi. It contributed to his arrest. And likely led to his acquittal, on the grounds of entrapment -- a rare event in federal court. The feds used a longtime government informant named Eric Hill to make the case against Molavi. Hill, 48, was supposed to get Molavi, 70, on tape discussing his willingness to hire the hitman, which he did. But Hill talked too much. He told Molavi that his friend the hitman was a racist prison gang member who would kill anyone for even the most minor offense. The "hitman" was actually an undercover FBI agent. But because Molavi secretly recorded that conversation on his phone, a Dallas federal jury was able to hear as Hill allegedly made the hitman sound so dangerously unstable that Molavi felt pressured into hiring the hitman or risk becoming a victim himself. The jury in March acquitted Molavi on all four counts against him after a five-day trial. They apparently agreed that Hill, working as an agent for the government, had planted the scheme in Molavi's head and then cajoled him with threats and harassment to pursue it. Hill could not be reached for comment. Molavi declined to comment. Molavi's attorney, Michael Kawi, said his client is an Iranian immigrant who built a successful life in the U.S. and spent a year behind bars awaiting trial. "Mr. Molavi insisted on his innocence from literally day one," Kawi said.   Continue reading...

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