Recently, the Revolutionary Court of Rasht City sentenced three Christian Converts, Ahmad Sarparast, Ayoub Pourrezazadeh and Morteza Hajeb Mashhood-Kari each to 5 years imprisonment and a fine of 18 million tomans.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, the Revolutionary Court of Rasht notified lawyer Iman Soleimani about the verdict against his clients. According to this verdict, Ahmad Sarparast, Ayoub Pourrezazadeh and Morteza Hajeb Mashhood-Kari have been sentenced to five years imprisonment on the charges of “holding home church services, propaganda against the regime, association with Zionism and Branhamist sect”. They have also been fined in the amount of 18 million tomans.

In an interview with HRANA, attorney Iman Soleimani said, “This trial did not go through a legal process as the judge was affected by judicial officers’ efforts to ensure the conviction, unlike the fact that the defendants did not commit any crimes punishable under Article 500 of the Islamic Penal Code. Rather, the defendant exercised their rights to freedom of opinion. The conviction stands at odds with the prohibition of inquisition and the principle of resolution of ambiguities in favor of defendants. These individuals would not have been convicted in a fair trial.”

On September 5, 2021, these three Christian converts were arrested by security forces in Rasht. Thirteen days later, in a phone call to their families, Ahmad Sarparast and Morteza Hajeb Mashhood-Kari mentioned their relocation to Lakan Prison. On September 22, 2021, they were released on bail of 400 million tomans until the end of legal proceedings. One day later, Ayoub Pourrezazadeh was also released on bail of the same amount.

The prosecution of Christian converts stands in blatant violation of Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which state that every individual has the right to freedom of religion and belief and freedom to express it openly or secretly.

Source » en-hrana