Friday, April 14, 2006

Latest news on political prisoners

Iran Press News: Translation by Banafsheh Zand-Bonazzi.
1. Mohsen Dorostkar and Elham Afroutan, the two journalists arrested on January 23rd, at the offices of the publication TAMADON'EH HORMOZGAN in the southern city of Bandar Abbass appeared at the revolutionary court on Sunday, April 8th. The judge whose name is Zareh-Dehnavi and goes by the alias Judge Hadod, refused to rule on the case as the actual date for the tribunal had been set for May 8th. In the end of the informal hearing, officers of the court conveyed to the two journalists that the sentencing for their specific charges carries a two year prison sentence and a $17000 cash fine; however, the sentencing order has not as of yet been issued to them. This specific court is known to handle 95% of the political prisoners cases and it has turned out 100% conviction rate of cases that have been sent down from various intelligence and security sources of the Islamic regime.

2. Political prisoner, Behnam Vafa-Seresht has been transferred to an unknown detention location in Kurdistan. There is no news about his whereabouts. After having served his full prison sentence, on the day of his release from prison, Vafa-Seresht was transferred out without any warning. A few days before his release he had indicated to his fellow prisoners that another file regarding his trips abroad and his activities in prison, had been compiled to be used against him.

3. Political prisoner, Heshmatollah Tabarzadi is also now caught up in a new round of conflicts with the Islamic regime's judiciary. He is currently serving a prison sentence without receiving any of the concessions of a regular prisoner; he has been struggling to take back his property and belongings that were confiscated from his home by the revolutionary court during his 1999 arrest. His house is still being held as collateral by branch 6 of the revolutionary court, which refuses to even consider returning the deed to the Tabarzadi family.