Following the trend of heavy prison terms for human rights activists and prisoners of conscience, Branch 26 of Tehran Revolutionary Courts, with Judge Pirabbasi presiding, sentenced Navid Khanjani, a student banned from continuing his education, to 12 years in prison and cash fines. Khanjani, who was deprived from continuing his education because of his civil activities, had previously been served with a ruling which banned him from traveling abroad. The human rights activist is only 24.
Announcing the news, the Society Against Educational Discrimination wrote that the four-page ruling was served to his lawyer, Shima Ghousheh, on Sunday, 30 January 2011. The ruling represents the most severe prison term doled out against any human rights activist prosecuted.
An informed source told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that Navid Khanjani’s trial court, held on 20 December 2010, took about 2.5 hours. Though the court was announced open, Khanjani’s lawyer was the only person allowed to attend it, and none of the other attendants were allowed to enter the court sessions, while plainclothes forces were present inside the court. His charges were “propagating falsehoods,” “creating public anxiety,” and “propagating against the regime through publishing news and reports and interviewing with foreign TV and radios,” “membership in the Central Council of the Committee of Human Rights Reporters,” as well as “formation of a group … >>>