A German government official and an Iranian opposition group say a top Iranian cleric under investigation in Germany for alleged crimes against humanity has left the country, Reuters reports.

The news agency quoted an unidentified German government official as saying in the afternoon of January 11 that Ayatollah Mahmud Hashemi Shahrudi was aboard an Iran-bound plane.

Javad Dabiran, a spokesman for the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), said that the exiled opposition group saw Shahrudi leave the hospital in the northern city of Hannover where he was receiving treatment. Dabiran said the cleric later departed from Hamburg airport on an Iran Air flight.

A spokesman for the prosecutor's office said authorities "will continue to examine on a legal basis whether Shahroudi was guilty of crimes against humanity" during the period he was overseeing an estimated 2,000 executions as the head of Iran's Judiciary, regardless of whether he leaves or stays in the Germany.

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