A US judge has ordered Iran to pay $1.45bn (1.23bn euros; £1.12bn) to the family of an ex-FBI agent who vanished during a visit to the country in 2007.
A ruling awarded Robert Levinson’s wife and children $1.35bn in punitive damages and $107m in compensatory damages for kidnapping.
There was no immediate response from the Iran government, which has always denied knowing his status or location.
US authorities and Mr Robinson’s family believe he died in Iranian custody.
In a statement, they described the ruling last Thursday by Judge Timothy Kelly of the US District Court in Washington as “the first step in the pursuit of justice”
“Until now, Iran has faced no consequences for its actions,” they added.
“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.” (BBC)