The Court of appeals of Tehran upheld the verdict against Mehdi Mahmoodian, Arash Keykhosravi, Mostafa Nili, Mohammad-Reza Faghihi, and Maryam Afrafaraz. Previously, these individuals, whose case is known as “Health Defenders”, had been sentenced to over ten years combined and additional punishments.
According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, the Court of Appeals of Tehran upheld the verdict for the five defendants in the case known as “Health Defenders”.
The verdict was issued without a court hearing.
The sentences are issued as: :
- Mehdi Mahmoodian: four years in prison, banned from presence in media for two years,
- Mostafa Nili: four years in prison, banned from presence in media for two years, prohibited from practising law for two years,
- Arash Keykhosravi: two years in prison, banned from presence in media for one year, and prohibited from practising law for one year,
- Mohammad-Reza Faghihi: six months in prison,
- Maryam Afrafaraz: 95 days in prison.
Attorney Babak Paknia said that at a public court session, he was not allowed to attend the court even as a spectator.
The first three defendants were convicted on the charge of “creating anti-regime groups to disrupt national security and propaganda against the regime”. The two last were convicted of “membership in anti-regime groups.”
On August 14, 2021, during a meeting to make a decision on filing a lawsuit against Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and the government for banning foreign vaccines, nine Iranian lawyers and civil rights activists were arrested.