May 16, 2010
HRANA – On Friday, May 14, 2010, the Revolutionary Court of Shiraz sentenced Mr. Mohammadreza Nasababdollahi to eight months prison for “propaganda against the regime”.
In the aftermath of the presidential elections of June 2009, Mr. Nasababdollahi, a journalist, reported the existence of four boxes of uncounted ballots at the Central Library of Shiraz. He initially published this report on his weblog. On July 1, 2009, he published his report along with pictures of the uncounted ballot boxes in the local papers.
Once newspapers published Mr. Nasababdollahi’s report, he was charged with “spreading lies” and “propaganda against the regime” in two separate courts. The Criminal Court threw out the case after several hearings on the ground that such charges cannot be sustained in the absence of a civil complaint of libel. The Revolutionary Court, however, found the journalist guilty of propaganda against the regime. At the Revolutionary Court hearings the attorney for the defendant, Mr. Gholamhosayn Raisi, invoked the defense of double jeopardy as the case against his client was being adjudicated in two separate Courts. He cited sections 46, 500 and 698 of the Islamic Penal Code. The Revolutionary Court ruled against Mr. Nasababdolahhi on this ground .