WASHINGTON (AP) — An Associated Press investigation shows that a U.S. man who disappeared nearly seven years ago in Iran was working for the CIA as part of an unapproved intelligence-gathering mission.
Retired FBI agent Robert Levinson vanished in March 2007 on the Iranian island of Kish. For years, the U.S. has described him as a private citizen traveling on private business.
But a team of CIA analysts, with no authority to run spy operations, was paying Levinson to gather intelligence.
In response, three analysts were forced out and seven others were disciplined. The CIA paid Levinson's family $2.5 million to pre-empt a revealing lawsuit, and the agency rewrote its rules restricting how analysts work with outsiders.
The U.S. has had no word on Levinson's fate for nearly three years.