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Source: IranWire

Apr 29, 2023

Dozens Languish in Iran’s Jails Without Legal Verdicts


In Iran, dozens of individuals who participated in nationwide protests are currently being held in prison without due judicial process, and without a verdict being handed down against them by a court of law, according to information obtained by IranWire. 

These individuals have been interrogated multiple times, but have not admitted to the charges against them. 

Family members of those arrested have spoken out, stating that many of the arrests were made without sufficient evidence and only under false pretences.

Masoud Islami Nasab, 23, is just one example of those who have been unjustly detained. 

He has been in custody since October 15, last year, on the charge of attacking a government official with a “cold [bladed] weapon.”

Despite a lack of evidence to convict him, Nasab was transferred to Evin Prison for further interrogation as ordered by judge Abulqasem Salavati.

Civil activists within Iran have also spoken out about this issue, shedding light on the lack of clear evidence to convict those who are being held. 

“Among the detainees are Mohammad Havashemzadeh, Amir Ali Haqshenas, and Bahman Meskin Nawaz, who were transferred from Tehran prison to Evin,” an activist said. 

Javad Rouhi, Mohammad Reza Shabani, and Arshiya Takdastan are also being held without sufficient evidence or documentation to convict them, often with a private plaintiff.

This detainment of individuals without proper evidence or a fair trial highlights a larger issue within Iran's justice system. 

It raises concerns about the mistreatment of citizens and the lack of transparency in legal proceedings.

IranWire has been unable to obtain any information about the time of arrest and charges against Amir Ali Haqshenas and Bahman Meskin Nawaz.

However, Mohammad Reza Shabani, a 21-year-old who was arrested on September 24 of last year, along with his wife Aida Omirat, by the intelligence forces of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps in Nowshahr, is known to have been transferred to Tirkala prison in the northern city of Sari. 

This was due to a severe beating he received, injuring his kidney and leg area, which had previously been operated on before his arrest. Despite being held for more than five months, Shabani remains in prison, even though no verdict has been handed down against him.

Javad Rouhi and Arshiya Takdastan, who were arrested during the protests in Nowshahr, have also been in limbo since their arrest. 

They are accused of "waging war against God" and “spreading corruption on earth” and were previously sentenced to death three and two times respectively. 

Arshia Takdastan's death sentence was overturned by the judiciary due to a lack of sufficient evidence, but there is no news of Javad Rouhi's final sentence. 

His lawyer had previously stated that all three times his client was sentenced to death without any proof of the allegations against him.

Legal Limbo

The case of Hadi Mirzaei, a 36-year-old musician and civil rights activist who was arrested over four months ago, is still unresolved after multiple court appearances at Branch 15 of the Revolutionary Court. 

Mirzaei has been accused of "propaganda against the regime," "gathering and collusion to commit a crime," and "encouraging corruption by filming riots."

According to a source who spoke with IranWire, there is not enough evidence to convict Mirzaei, and he has recently been transferred from Greater Tehran Prison to Evin for further interrogation. 

The source stated that Mirzaei, who is a vegetarian, has lost significant weight due to the poor quality and limited variety of prison food, and is being pressured to confess to the charges against him.

Mohammad Havashimzadeh is another individual who is being held without sufficient evidence on charges of "espionage" and is currently in limbo. 

Havashimzadeh, who previously operated a cafe in Antalya, Turkey, was arrested in front of his sister's house in Tehran's Pirouzi neighborhood during a trip to Iran. 

He has been in limbo, charged with "spying for hostile governments," and has spent over six months in prison.

The authorities used his Turkish residency as an excuse to accuse him of espionage. 

"I heard directly from Mohammad that [Judge] Salavati, upon reading the interrogator's report which indicated that there were no espionage charges against him, exclaimed, 'I don't accept this nonsense; he should be called in for further questioning,'" a source told IranWire. 

In addition, IranWire received information that Parham Parwari, a swimming champion from Saqqez, is still in danger of execution. 

Parham was arrested in Tehran in early October and spent six months in Tehran's Greater Prison before being transferred to Evin Prison. 

A source revealed that Parham is in a vulnerable mental state, and the uncertainty and risk of execution have made the situation even more difficult for him.

Parham's trial was originally scheduled for April 10 but was postponed until after the month of Ramadan.

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