Shahin Mirkhani Executed in Shirvan Prison

On May 30, Shahin Mirkhani was executed in Shirvan Prison in North Khorasan Province.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Iran Human Rights (IHR), 40-year-old Mirkhani, son of Rasoul, was previously sentenced to death on drug-related charges.

Per the report, an informed source said, “Shahin Mirkhani was sentenced to death for carrying 420 kilograms of crystal meth stimulant, and on Sunday was executed in the backyard of Shirvan Prison.”

Iran ranks first in the world in citizen executions per-capita, according to international organizations. The Statistics and Publication Center of the Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) reported that between January 1st and  December 20th of 2020, at least 236 citizens were executed. One of these citizens was executed publicly, and two were juvenile offenders. An additional 95 citizens were sentenced to death.

According to the report, more than 72% of executions in Iran are not reported by the government or the judiciary. Human rights organizations call these “secret executions.”

At the time of writing, Mirkhani’s execution has not been reported by domestic media or officials in Iran.

Married Couple Executed in Qazvin Prison on Drug-Related Charges

On May 30, two prisoners were executed in Qazvin prison on drug-related charges.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Iran Human Rights (IHR), Mr. Yousef Pirastvan and Ms. Pirastvan (first name unknown) were a married couple at the time of their arrest.

An informed source said that Mr. and Ms. Pirastvan were arrested 7-8 years ago on the Qazvin-Karaj highway on charges of carrying 380 kilograms of drugs and were sentenced to death in their first court session.

According to international organizations, Iran ranks first in the world in citizen executions per-capita. The Statistics and Publication Center of the Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRAI) reported that between January 1st and  December 20th of 2020, at least 236 citizens were executed. One of these citizens was executed publicly, and two were juvenile offenders. An additional 95 citizens were sentenced to death.

More than 72% of executions in Iran are not reported by the government or the judiciary. Human rights organizations call these “secret executions.”

At the time of writing, their execution has not been reported by domestic media or officials in Iran.

Three sentenced to Death in Tehran Under Qisas (Eye-for-an-Eye) Principle of Shariah Law

In two isolated incidents, three citizens were sentenced to death in Tehran, all on charges of murder.

According to the HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Rokna news,  death sentences were upheld by the Supreme Court for two defendants who were sentenced under the Qisas (loosely translated as eye-for-an-eye) principle of Shariah Law.

The sentence was issued after 37-year-old Meysam, a shopkeeper, was stabbed to death in Varamin in Tehran.

In a separate incident, according to the Javanonline News, a defendant was sentenced to death for murder under the Qisas principle by the criminal court in Tehran province.

The victim’s wife and two murder suspects, all suspected of orchestrating the killing, were also sentenced to prison time.

 

 

Narges Mohammadi Sentenced to 30 Additional Months in Prison, Flogging, and Fines

On May 19, less than a year after completing a five year sentence and being released from Zanjan Prison, human rights activist Narges Mohammadi was sentenced by Branch 1177 of the Criminal Court in the Quds Judicial Complex in Tehran to 30 more months in prison, 80 lashes, and two fines.

In March, HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, reported that Narges Mohammadi had published an open letter in response to her latest summons to the Evin Courthouse.

“I have not attended any hearing,” Mohammadi said in the letter. “I will not accept the verdict issued by the court and I definitely will disobey.”

According to HRANA, Mohammadi is facing a slew of protest-related charges, including “Propaganda activities against the Islamic Republic of Iran through the issuance of a statement against the death penalty”,  “Sit-down strike in the prison office”, “Breaking glass”, “Libel and assault”, and “Rebelling against the prison administration who asked to end the sit-down strike”.

In December 2019, Mohammadi and seven other political prisoners in the women’s ward of Evin Prison announced in a letter that they would go on a sit-down strike in support of bereaved families who lost loved ones in November 2019 national protests. Evin Prison officials threatened to deport Mohammadi and others who participated in the strike to prisons known for their harsher conditions. She was transferred from Evin Prison to Zanjan Prison in December 2019.

After five years and six months in prison, Narges Mohammadi was finally released from Zanjan in October 2020. Mohammadi has since been denied a passport and barred from leaving the country to visit her husband and children even though her previous conviction did not mention a supplementary ban on international travel.

Whether Mohammadi’s latest sentence is carried out given her refusal to accept the charges remains to be seen.

World Day Against the Death Penalty: Annual Report on Execution in Iran 2019-2020

Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA)- On the World Day Against the Death Penalty, the Center of Statistics of Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRAI) has published its annual report, in efforts to sensitize the public about the situation of the death penalty in Iran.

HRANA’s Statistics Center relies on the work of HRANA reporters, as well as a network of independent and verifiable sources. It also incorporates disclosures to the media by judicial authorities announcing or confirming prisoner executions, and as such is exposed to a margin of error representing efforts by the Iranian authorities to omit, conceal, or restrict the collection of such data.

Between October 10, 2019, and October 8, 2020, the death penalty and executions have been the focus of 264 HRANA reports. Over this time period, the Iranian authorities issued the death penalty sentence to 96 individuals and have already carried out 256 executions including 2 public executions.

Click here to download report in PDF format

While execution numbers went down by 2% in comparison to the same time last year, Iranian courts have issued 16% less death sentences. Public hangings and executions of women have decreased by 78% and increased 12%, respectively.

Females account for only 15 of the 256 HRANA-confirmed execution victims this year. . In addition, 2 juvenile offenders, under the age of 18 when they allegedly committed the crime they were charged with, were executed.

The report includes a breakdown of executions by capital offense: 80.08% were charged with murder, 7.42% were charged with drug and narcotic offenses, 5.08% were charged with Rape, 2.34% were charged with armed robbery/offenses classified as “corruption on earth”, 3.13% were charged with political or security-related offenses, 0.39% were charged with drinking alcohol and 1.56% had unknown charges.

The chart below displays execution numbers by the province in which they took place. According to this chart, Alborz had the highest number of executions at 16%.  Khorasan Razavi and West Azerbaijan come second and third, with 11% and 9% respectively.

The chart below is a distribution of execution information sources. The chart indicates that 77% of HRANA-confirmed executions were not announced by the official Iranian sources. Undisclosed executions are referred to as “secret” executions.

The chart below displays execution numbers by their location in prison or public. According to statistics, 1% of the executions in Iran were carried out in public.

 

Click here to download the report in PDF format

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World Day Against the Death Penalty: Annual Report on Execution in Iran-2019

Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA)- On the World Day Against the Death Penalty, the Center of Statistics of Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRAI) has published its annual report, in efforts to sensitize the public about the situation of the death penalty in Iran.

HRANA’s Statistics Center relies on the work of HRANA reporters, as well as a network of independent and verifiable sources. It also incorporates disclosures to the media by judicial authorities announcing or confirming prisoner executions, and as such is exposed to a margin of error representing efforts by the Iranian authorities to omit, conceal, or restrict the collection of such data.

From October 10, 2018, to October 8, 2019, the death penalty and executions have been the focus of 250 HRANA reports. Over this time period, the Iranian authorities issued the death penalty sentence to 134 individuals and have already carried out 242 executions including 16 public executions.

While execution numbers went down by 5.4% in comparison to the same time last year, Iranian courts have issued 47.6% less death sentences. Public hangings and executions of women have raised 6.6% and 140%, respectively.

Females account for only 12 of the 242 HRANA-confirmed execution victims this year. In addition, five juvenile offenders who were under the age of 18 when they allegedly committed the crime they were charged with, were executed.

The report includes a breakdown of executions by capital offense: 71% were charged with murder, 14% were charged with drug and narcotic offenses, 6% were charged with rape, 5% were charged with armed robbery/offenses classified as “corruption on earth”, 2% were charged with political or security-related offenses, and 2% had unknown charges.

The chart below displays execution numbers by their location in prison or public. According to statistics, 7% of the executions in Iran were carried out in public.

The chart below displays execution numbers by the province in which they took place. According to this chart, Alborz with 25% has the highest number of executions and West Azerbaijan 8% and Kerman 7% are second and third.

The chart below is a distribution of execution information sources. The chart indicates that 72% of HRANA-confirmed executions were not announced by the official Iranian sources. Undisclosed executions are referred to as “secret” executions.

 

Click here to download the report

Four Prisoners of the Evin Prison were Sentenced to Death and Imprisonment

Four prisoners of the Evin prison were informed of their sentences on Sunday, May 19, 219 by the Revolutionary Court of Tehran after spending a year in prison in limbo.

Abodollah Ghasempour was sentenced to death and eight years imprisonment, Mohammad Hossein Ghasempour, Alireza Habibian and Akbar Dalir were sentenced to five years and half in prison, each. Their trial was held earlier this month in Branch 28 of the Revolutionary Court of Tehran led by Judge Moghiseh. Abdollah Ghasempour, 34, was charged with “Baghi” (armed rebellion against Islamic state) for which he was sentenced to death, was also charged with “assembly and collusion” for which was sentenced to 5 years and half in prison and finally was charged to “membership in Mojaheddin Khalgh organization” for which was sentenced to two years and half in prison.

32-year -old Mohammad Hossein Ghasempour (Abdollah’s brother), 30-year-old Alireza Habibian, and 34-year-old Akbar Delir who are all in Ward 4 of the Evin prion were charged with “assembly and collusion” and were sentenced to five and half years in prison.

Initially their charge was “waging war by advocacy, membership, and cooperation with Mojahedin Khalgh Organization” through setting a Basij paramilitary base on fire and distributing its footage to be broadcast on the Mojahedin Khlagh media which was later changed to “acting against national security through propaganda against the state” for the other three prisoner.

Kurdistan Court Condemns Juvenile Offender with History of Mental Illness

Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA)- Sanandaj prisoner Shayan Saeedpour, now 20, has been sentenced to death by Judge Vafayian in Branch 1 of Kurdistan Criminal Court for a murder he committed at age 17, at a time that he may have been under monitoring for a psychiatric condition.

A member of Saeedpour’s family told HRANA that the young man stands accused of murdering Soleyman Azadi in a scuffle on August 16, 2015, just two months shy of his 18th birthday. “Saeedpour said he was acting under the influence of bootleg alcohol and wasn’t in his right mind,” the source said.

Saeedpour turned himself over to police two days after the incident, accompanied by his father.

An appeals request submitted by Saeedpour’s lawyer is currently under review. “[…]Despite evidence and witness testimony, the coroner’s office has left the judiciary to determine whether or not he was intoxicated,” the attorney said. “…[He] was under the influence of alcohol and two witnesses have testified to the veracity of this claim.”

The attorney added that Saeedpour didn’t know the victim prior to the incident.

Saeedpour’s loved ones say he has a history of inflicting self-harm, impulse control disorder, and — since 2014 — consistent psychiatric oversight. According to his family, Saeedpour betrayed no indication of grasping what had transpired after Azadi was killed. The coroner’s office disagreed: as relayed by Saeedpour’s lawyer, they ruled he had “the mental maturity and capacity to distinguish right from wrong and to discern whether his action was criminal.”

Seeking a second opinion, the case investigator sent the case to the Kermanshah coroner, who concurred with the initial evaluation.

In addition to the death penalty, Saeedpour was sentenced to 80 lashes for drinking.

A close source shared with HRANA that Saeedpour was once a member of a traditional Iranian gym. Previously the bodybuilding champion in his province, he once placed third in a national tournament.

The punishment of children — particularly death sentences for minors caught up in skirmishes, crimes of passion, or the drug trade — remains one of the premier human rights battles in Iran.

Iran has been a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child for the past 25 years. Article 37 of the Convention reads, “Neither capital punishment nor life imprisonment without possibility of release shall be imposed for offences committed by persons below eighteen years of age”. In 2017, at least four juvenile offenders were executed in Iran after their 18th birthday. Since the beginning of 2018, multiple child offenders have been executed or sentenced to death.

Iran, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen are among the few countries where offenders can be executed for crimes they committed as minors. In response to one of these executions in February of 2018, Human Rights Watch issued a statement urging Iranian authorities to “ …]immediately and unconditionally end the use of the death penalty for crimes committed by children under age 18, and move toward a complete ban on capital punishment.”

Identity of Leila Tajik’s co-Defendant Confirmed

Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA)- HRANA has identified Leila Tajik’s co-defendant and former spouse — sentenced to death on espionage charges, per a HRANA report dated October 11, 2018 — as Seyed Jamal Hajizavar, 47, a former staff member on the IRGC Aerospace Force.

In the same report, HRANA reported on Tajik’s sentence of 15 years’ imprisonment in exile for the same charges, ruled in Branch 4 of Tehran Military Court.

Pursuant to a joint case opened up against the two by the IRGC intelligence unit, the former couple was arrested September 5, 2017, and held in an IGRC outpost. Tajik was later transferred to the Evin Prison Women’s Ward on March 19, 2018.

Over the course of his 14-month detainment, reports of Hajizavar’s violent torture — including de-nailing and electric shock in so-called “death cells”– have been conspicuously absent from the state-run news media.

An informed source previously told HRANA, “their children, Sabah, 16, and Sahand, 19, are hurting over the breakup of their family, and are feeling additional pressures from IRGC agents.”

Prisoner Executed in Yazd

Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA) – Prisoner Sami Mohtarami, 43, was executed in Ardakan Prison on the morning of Saturday, November 3, 2018.

An informed source confirmed the news of his death to HRANA. “The victim’s family had agreed to absolve him if he could pay the blood money, but he wasn’t able to,” the source said. “He was transferred to solitary confinement on Thursday, November 1, 2018, two nights before his execution.”

Convicted of murdering someone while stealing a car, Mohtarami had been detained in Ardakan Prison since 2015. He previously served a five-year sentence in Ardakan on drug-related charges.

According to Amnesty International’s annual report, Iran ranks first in the world in executions per capita. On the World Day against the Death Penalty (October 10th), the Center of Statistics at Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRAI) published its annual report, indicating that at least 256 citizens were executed in Iran between October 10, 2017, and October 9, 2018, 15 of which were public hangings. Sixty-eight percent of executions, referred to as “secret executions,” are not announced by the state or Judiciary.

Ardakan is located in the central district of Ardakan County, Yazd Province.