The U.S. Treasury Department on Friday targeted one of Osama bin Laden's sons and three other alleged al-Qaeda it believes are operating in Iran under an executive order that freezes their assets under U.S. jurisdiction and outlaws their supporters.
Osama bin Laden's son Sa'ad, along with Mustafa Hamid, Muhammad Rab'a al-Sayid al-Bahtiyti and Ali Saleh Husain, are alleged to have worked for al-Qaeda in Iran, and some have ties to the Iranian government, said the department in a statement.
"It is important that Iran give a public accounting of how it is meeting its international obligations to constrain al-Qaeda," said Stuart Levey, undersecretary of the treasury for terrorism and financial intelligence.
Any assets the men have under U.S. jurisdiction will be frozen and Americans will be prohibited from doing business with them, the Treasury Department said.
The four men were all detained by Iranian authorities in 2003, said U.S. officials, although Sa'ad bin Laden may not have been in Iranian custody since September 2008.
Sa'ad bin Laden "made key decisions for al-Qaeda and was part of a small group of al-Qaeda members that was involved in managing the terrorist organization from Iran," the department alleges.
Believed to be in Pakistan
U.S. intelligence said Sa'ad, has left that Iran and is believed to be in
He is believed to have been under house arrest in recent years, but some reports say he also may have acted as an intermediary with Iran. The U.S. government lists him as having been born in 1982.
The United States and Saudi Arabia have sought the repatriation of al-Qaeda members in Iran.
A U.S. counterterrorism official described the younger bin Laden as "a very well-connected apprentice terrorist."
U.S. officials have spoken of a growing success in crippling al-Qaeda's central leadership through pressure on the Pakistan border areas with Afghanistan, where the elder bin Laden and top deputies are believed to be hiding