Prominent lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh will serve 38 years in prison after being convicted of encouraging corruption and prostitution.
Rabat – Tehran’s Revolutionary Court has sentenced Iranian prominent lawyer and human rights defender Nasrin Sotoudeh to 38 years in prison and 148 lashes after two trials.
Sotoudeh had been serving a 5-year sentence after being convicted on June 13, 2018. After another trial, the court sentenced her to a total of 38 years and 148 lashes.
Quoting Sotoudeh’s lawyer Mohammad Moghimi, Human Rights Watch stated that Sotoudeh was sent to prison on charges of assembly and collusion against national security, propaganda against the state, and her membership in the Defenders of Human Rights Center, the Legam group campaigning for the abolition of the death penalty, and the National Peace Council.
The court also convicted Sotoudeh of encouraging corruption and prostitution, appearing at the judiciary without Islamic hijab, disturbing public peace and order, and publishing falsehoods with the intent to disturb public opinion.
Human Rights Watch said the sentence was “draconian,” describing it as “an appalling travesty of justice.”
“This is the harshest sentence Amnesty International has documented against a human rights defender in Iran in recent years” said Amnesty International’s campaigns manager Kristyan Benedict.
The Iranian government also arrested Sotoudeh in 2010 on allegations of spreading propaganda and conspiring to harm state security. She spent three years in prison and was released in 2013.
According to Amnesty International, Iran has tightened its grip on outspoken human rights activists, including political dissidents, journalists, online media workers, students, filmmakers, musicians and writers, and minority rights and environmental activists.
Amnesty launched an online petition under the title “Free Nasrin Sotoudeh now,” calling on the international community to pressure Iran into releasing Sotoudeh after “after two grossly unfair trials.”