Speed Reads

Iran prisoner swap

Most of the freed Iranian convicts never actually left the U.S.

Although the seven Iranians released in the U.S.-Iran prisoner swap Saturday are now free to return to Iran, none of them actually boarded a plane back to the country, ABC News reports. While a plane did take off Saturday from an undisclosed location on the United States' East Coast as part of the plan to exchange the seven prisoners for the release of four Iranian-American dual-national citizens imprisoned in Iran — including Washington Post journalist Jason Rezaian — the plane departed empty.

Six of the seven convicts who were imprisoned in the U.S. have Iranian-American dual citizenship, and instead apparently opted to remain in the U.S. All of the men have been convicted or charged with violating trade embargoes by selling sensitive equipment to Iran. The plans of the seventh prisoner are unknown to ABC News.

Out of the Americans freed, only one chose to remain in Iran. A fifth Iran prisoner, recently detained American student Matthew Trevithick, was also released, though he was not part of the prison swap.