Protest Rapper Toomaj Salehi Sentenced to Death

Protest Rapper Toomaj Salehi Sentenced to Death

The Revolutionary Court of Isfahan sentenced protest rapper Toomaj Salehi to death for “spreading corruption on earth,” according to Shargh Newspaper.

Salehi’s lawyer, Amir Raisian, commented on the ruling, stating, “Branch 1 of the Isfahan Revolutionary Court issued an unprecedented verdict by disregarding the Supreme Court’s resolution from 2022, labeling it as an ‘advisory verdict,’ and upheld the initial death sentence for ‘spreading corruption on earth.'”

Raisian explained that the Isfahan Revolutionary Court cited “assisting in armed rebellion (Baghi),” “propaganda against the regime,” and “inciting people to unrest” as per Article 512 of the Islamic Penal Code as grounds for the charge of “spreading corruption on earth.” The court emphasized the concept of widespread corruption, although Raisian argued that the evidence did not support the charge at the level required for the severest punishment.

In addition to the death sentence, the court imposed other penalties on Salehi, including a two-year travel ban, the annulment of his passport, and mandatory participation in behavior management and knowledge skills programs. The court also enforced a previously suspended sentence.

Raisian expressed his surprise at the “obvious conflict within the initial verdict and with the Supreme Court’s decision.” He also dismissed rumors of Salehi receiving amnesty or commutation, clarifying that the court only mentioned the potential for a one-degree reduction in punishment through the Amnesty Commission.

Salehi’s legal saga began in late October 2022 when he was initially detained by security forces during nationwide protests. Subsequently, the Isfahan Revolutionary Court sentenced him to six years and three months in prison, among other penalties. However, he secured release on bail after the Supreme Court overturned the verdict.

Nevertheless, Salehi’s freedom was short-lived as he was re-arrested in Babol on November 30, just twelve days after being bailed out from Dastgerd Prison in Isfahan. The Judiciary spokesperson cited Salehi’s post-release statement as grounds for this subsequent arrest.

It’s worth noting that Salehi has a prior conviction from January 12, 2022, where he received a six-month prison term and a fine, with the imprisonment suspended for one year.


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