Ali Esfanjani

As part of the MOIS plot, Ali Esfanjani (Esfanjani) befriended Vardanjani, fed the MOIS information about him, and ultimately led him to the location where he was assassinated by Abdulvahap Kocak

Status:Top Alert – Entity designated / sanctioned for terror, WMD and human rights violation

Risk Level:99%

May harm your business future. Persons or entities that engage in transactions with this entity will be exposed to sanctions or subject to an enforcement action.

Working with this entity means supporting Iranian Regime, Regime Terrorist Activities & development of WMD

As part of the MOIS plot, Ali Esfanjani (Esfanjani) befriended Vardanjani, fed the MOIS information about him, and ultimately led him to the location where he was assassinated by Abdulvahap Kocak. Abulvahap Kocak used Zindashti’s residence as a safe house following the murder but was later captured by Turkish authorities. Nominally Zindashti’s gardener, Abdulvahap Kocak, served as a hitman who has been implicated in multiple assassinations ordered by Zindashti, including the killing of a rival drug trafficker’s attorney in Istanbul in 2017. Abdulvahap Kocak is currently incarcerated in Türkiye. Muhammad Reza Naserzadeh, a staff member of the Iranian Consulate in Istanbul involved in the assassination plot, forged documents for Esfanjani to help him escape to Iran following the assassination.

Zindashti has previously cooperated with the MOIS to target regime dissidents. In 2020, as part of an MOIS-sponsored operation, Habib Chaab, a leader of the Arab Struggle Movement for the Liberation of Ahvaz (ASMLA), was abducted in Türkiye by Zindashti’s men. Chaab was then smuggled into Iran where he was imprisoned, tortured, forced to confess under duress, and ultimately convicted of “corruption on earth” following a trial which lacked fair-trial guarantees. Iranian authorities executed Chaab in May 2023.

In 2019, the MOIS used Zindashti and his men to assassinate former Iranian cybersecurity official turned regime critic Mas’ud Vardanjani (Vardanjani) in Istanbul. Vardanjani, who was outspoken in his condemnation of the Iranian regime, publicly disclosed documents exposing financial corruption and assassinations by the regime via his Telegram channel.

Zindashti currently resides in Iran. Ryan and Pearson are currently incarcerated in Canada on unrelated offenses.

Naji Ibrahim Sharifi-Zindashti (Zindashti) operates at the behest of Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS). Zindashti’s network has carried out numerous acts of transnational repression including assassinations and kidnappings across multiple jurisdictions in an attempt to silence the Iranian regime’s perceived critics. The network has also plotted operations in the United States

Iran-based narco-trafficker Zindashti and his network are intertwined with Iran’s transnational repression efforts to silence and intimidate dissidents, former insiders, and other perceived opponents by carrying out assassinations and kidnappings under the direction of the MOIS across multiple continents. Iranian security forces protect Zindashti and his criminal empire, enabling Zindashti to thrive in the country’s drug market and live a life of luxury while his network exports the regime’s repression, carrying out heinous operations on the government’s behalf. Zindashti’s network has been linked to murders in several countries, including the United Arab Emirates, Canada, and Türkiye.

Also Known As:
(Arabic: علی اسفنجانی)




15 Aug 1985


P30251288 (Iran) expires 01 Jun 2019

Reason for the color:
» Added to the Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) list maintained by the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) on January 29, 2024 pursuant to Executive Order 13553 for having materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services to or in support of, the MOIS;