/ IHRights#Iran: Hossein Amaninejad and Hamed Yavari were executed in Hamedan Central Prison on 11 June. Hossein was arrested… https://t.co/3lnMTwFH6z13 Jun

Maryam Akbari-Monfared Sentenced to 2 Years for Bogus Charges

28 Aug 23
Maryam Akbari-Monfared Sentenced to 2 Years for Bogus Charges

Iran Human Rights (IHRNGO); August 28, 2023: Maryam Akbari-Monfared, a human rights defender who is the serving the 14th year of her sentence for seeking justice for her four slain siblings, has been sentenced to two years imprisonment in absentia by Branch 101 of the Semnan Criminal Court.

According to information obtained by Iran Human Rights, Maryam Akbari Monfared has been sentenced to two years imprisonment and a 15 million tomans (300 euros) in absentia for charges of "publishing lies and disrupting public minds" in one of the new bogus cases brought against her.

The new sentence has been issued as the repression against families seeking justice and civil activists intensifies in the run up to the anniversary of Jina (Mahsa) Amini’s state-murder.

Speaking to Iran Human Rights, an informed source about her case said: “Maryam Akbari is facing two new bogus cases. In the first case which dates back to her detention in Evin Prison, she has been charged with ‘propaganda against the system.’ In the second case which was opened during her Semnan Prison detention, Maryam faced charges of ‘insulting the leader, propaganda against the system, assembly and collusion, publishing lies and disrupting public minds, inciting people against internal and external security.’”

“Since the charges of ‘publishing lies and disrupting public minds’ is outside the jurisdiction of the Revolutionary Court, those charges have been separated from the case and referred to Branch 101 of the Semnan Criminal Court presided over by Judge Massoud Khoursi. The trial was set for 7 August but Ms Akbari Monfared refused to appear in court due to its lack legal authority, and the Judge also refused to allow her lawyer to represent her. The sentence was therefore issued on her letters published online in absentia and based on Article 746 of the Cyber Crimes Law as well as Articles 134 and 137,” the source added.

The source revealed: “In the sentence, it has been specified that the case was brought against her by the Ministry of Intelligence." 

Maryam, a mother of three daughters, is currently serving the 14th year of her 15-year sentence.

Maryam Akbari-Monfared was arrested following the 2009 nationwide protests at her home on 31 December 2009. She was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment for moharebeh (enmity against god) and acting against national security by Branch 15 of the Tehran Revolutionary Court for a phone call from her dissident sibling in Camp Ashraf, Iraq (former residence of MEK), in May 2010.

On 15 October 2016, she filed an official complaint from behind bars for an investigation into the execution of her siblings in the summer of 1988. In an open letter, she discussed the killings of her four siblings and the pressure her family had endured in the subsequent years. Her complaint was rejected by the judiciary and she was warned that such petitions would exacerbate her situation and prevent her release.

At trial, she was told by the judge that "she was paying for the activities of her brother and sister." Undeterred, she sent another complaint two weeks later. She wrote: “I, Maryam Akbari-Monfared, demand investigations into the unlawful execution of my sister and brother and disclosure of the details including the identities of those responsible for their deaths, acquisition of their charges and other documents in their files and inquiry into applicable relevant laws, in particular Article 34 of the constitution that recognises seeking justice as the inalienable right of every individual.”

Maryam Akbari Monfared has been demanding justice for her siblings, 25-year-old Abdolreza who was arrested at 17 and executed in the 1988 massacre, 20-year-old Alireza who was executed by firing squad at 20, her sister 30-year-old Roghieh who had a 3 year old daughter at the time of her arrest and also executed in the 1988 massacre, and her 29-year-old brother Gholamreza who was killed under torture in 1985. Following the execution of her children in the 1988 massacre, Maryam’s mother, Gorji Bashiripour suffered a stroke and passed away without ever finding out where her children were buried.

The United Nations Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances recognised Abdolreza and Roghieh’s as forcibly disappeared and requested that the Islamic Republic disclose their fate and place of burial.