Date of Publish: ۲۶ فروردین ۱۳۸۹

Iranian lawyers claim Special Court in prison "unconstitutional"

International campaign for Human Rights in Iran has called for an end to the activities of “a recently-established “special court” at Evin prison.”

The Campaign maintains that this court places judges and magistrates in the confines of the prison and restricts defense attorneys and detainee families access to the legal proceedings.

Hadi Ghaemi, spokesman for the Campaign maintained: “The recently-established court at Evin Prison increases the influence of the Ministry of Intelligence on the cases and allows interrogators and security forces to manipulate this institution which is itself in violation of the law.”

Defense attorney, Nasrin Sotoudeh says that defense activities have become “impossible” with the newly established court.

She maintains: “The judges are residing in a space that is under the strict control of the Ministry of Intelligence and during preliminary investigations, which are the most difficult time during a suspect’s prison term, case judges only receive information from intelligence officers, and neither the suspect’s lawyer nor his or her family can provide any information to the judges."

Another defense attorney, Farideh Gheyrat also informed the Campaign that she is highly concerned about the inaccessibility of her clients’ files and claims that now even extracting the old “simple and incomplete” pieces of information about the cases have become impossible.

Abbas Jafari Dowlatabadi, Prosecutor-General of Tehran announced the establishment of the Evin Court in early March. He maintained that the new court was established “due to necessity” to “reduce the costs” caused by recent upheavals and “a way to speed up investigations and solve problems.”

Files of numerous political activists and unknown post-election detainees, which are in legal limbo, are in this court.

Mina Jafari, Iranian court attorney, told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that the establishment of this court is “illegal and unconstitutional.”

According to the Campaign report, “the formation of a court for political prisoners within the confines of Evin prison, where the suspect is held, informed of his charges, tried, and sentenced, is reminiscent of 1980s courts where thousands of political prisoners were tried without fair investigation, and families and lawyers of prisoners were not allowed to influence the cases in any way.”

In the eighties, hundreds of political dissidents were executed condemned by such judicial procedures according to the Campaign report.

The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran expresses grave concern over “the erosion of standards for legal proceedings” in Iran which they contend is “making fair trials impossible.”