|January 12, 2003
Death sentence for drinking alcohol
TEHRAN (Reuters) - An Iranian court has sentenced a teen-ager to death by hanging
after he was convicted for a third time of drinking alcohol, the state newspaper
Iran said on Saturday.
Under Iran's strict Islamic law, consuming alcohol is forbidden for Muslims and
usually punishable by lashes or fines. An offender caught for a third time, however,
can be sentenced to death.
The 19-year-old man was arrested when he appeared at a police station in southern
Tehran to inquire about two of his friends who had recently been arrested.
Police noticed that the man, whose first name was given as Davoud, had been drinking
alcohol and immediately charged him.
"I had been punished twice for drinking three glasses of alcohol and I knew
what I was drinking was forbidden under Islamic law," the newspaper quoted
Davoud as saying.
Although illegal, alcohol is readily available on Iran's black market.
Despite the sentence, Davoud may escape the gallows. His case was passed on for
review after he expressed regret for his drinking exploits and gave a written pledge
to avoid alcohol in the future.
Sent by Sourena Mohammadi
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