Lawyer Saleh Nikbakht Receives One-Year Sentence and Social Media Restrictions

Saleh Nikbakht has been sentenced to one year in prison by the Tehran Revolutionary Court and faces restrictions on his social media activities.

Presided over by Judge Mohammad-Reza Amoozad, the Tehran Revolutionary Court delivered this verdict to Nikbakht for “spreading propaganda against the regime.” Additionally, he has been prohibited from engaging in social media activities for a duration of two years.

According to sources cited by HRANA, Nikbakht’s refusal to accept the forensic report concerning the cause of Mahsa Amini’s death was cited as evidence supporting this charge. Nikbakht, who served as Amini’s lawyer, found himself embroiled in this legal case following a complaint filed by the Ministry of Intelligence, primarily due to his interviews with media outlets outside Iran.

On March 11, 2023, Nikbakht was indicted at Evin Courthouse and subsequently released on bail.

Notably, Nikbakht has represented Mahsa Amini and several political prisoners, including Jafar Panahi, Eskandar Lotfi, and Masoud Nikkhah, in legal matters.

Majid Tavakoli Sentenced to Six Years and Additional Punishments

In a recent development, former political prisoner Majid Tavakoli, who was detained during the nationwide protests of 2022, has been sentenced to six years in prison along with additional punishments.

The Tehran Revolutionary Court, presided over by Judge Mohammad-Reza Amoozad, issued the verdict. Tavakoli was handed a one-year sentence for “propaganda against the regime” and a five-year sentence for “assembly and collusion against national security.” In addition to the prison term, he has been subjected to further restrictions, including a ban on engaging in online social activities for two years. Moreover, Tavakoli faces a two-year ban on residing in Tehran and a two-year ban on leaving the country.

If the verdict is upheld on appeal, based on Article 134 of the Islamic Penal Code, five years in prison will be enforceable.

The final court session addressing Tavakoli’s charges was held on July 15, 2023.

Tavakoli, a student activist and former political prisoner, was arrested by security forces in Tehran on September 23, 2022, during the Mahsa Amini Protests. He was subsequently released on bail on December 19, 2022.

Background on the 2022 Nationwide Protests

The arrest of Mahsa Amini by Tehran Morality Police for her improper hejab and her suspicious death on September 16 sparked protests sweeping across Iran. Protesters came to the streets with the central slogan “Women, Life, Freedom” in protest against the performance, laws and structure of the regime. During the nationwide protests, thousands of people, including journalists, artists, lawyers, teachers, students and civil rights activists, were arrested.