Former student activist Arash Sadeghi and his wife, Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee, have been sentenced to imprisonment on national security charges following grossly unfair trials. They have appealed their sentences.
Arash Sadeghi, a former student activist, was informed in August 2015 that he had been sentenced by Branch 15 of the Revolutionary Court in Tehran to 15 years’ imprisonment on charges including “spreading propaganda against the system”, “gathering and colluding against national security” and “insulting the founder of the Islamic Republic.” Amnesty International understands that Arash Sadeghi’s posts on Facebook about political prisoners, his interviews with the media about time he has spent in prison and his communications with journalists have been used against him as “evidence.” He had been arrested on 6 September 2014 and held in solitary confinement for six months, with no access to a lawyer. The court did not allow his lawyer to see his casefile, and said he could only have a lawyer if he or she was appointed by the court. Arash Sadeghi refused a court-appointed lawyer, so he had no legal representation at trial.
The court sentenced his wife, Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee to six years in prison for “insulting the sanctities of Islam” and “spreading propaganda against the system”. The charges appear to have arisen from an unpublished story the authorities found in her house, and her Facebook posts about political prisoners. Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee was sentenced in her absence, as she was in hospital with an illness on the day she was tried. The court rejected her request to adjourn the hearing. Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee and Arash Sadeghi were arrested on 6 September 2014 by men believed to be Revolutionary Guards, and taken to Section 2A of Tehran’s Evin Prison, where they have since said they were tortured or otherwise ill-treated. They were released on bail on 27 September 2014 and 14 March 2015 respectively.