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Iran: High court confirms 133-year combined sentence for 8 Facebook users

NCRI – The Supreme Court in Iran has confirmed the sentences of eight social media activists in Iran who have been sentenced to a total of 133 years in prison for criticizing the regime on Facebook, according to reports received from Iran.

The activists had been originally charged with “colluding and gathering against national security, propaganda activities against the system, insulting sacred symbols, insulting the head of the government branches and insulting specific individuals.”

It is unclear whether the activists who have been arrested in various cities including Tehran, Yazd, Kerman, Shiraz and Abadan were acting together.

The eight individuals include six men, Massoud Seyed Talebi, Fariborz Kardarfar, Amin Kararmipour, Amir Golestani, Massoud Ghasemjani, Mehdi Rayshahri, and two women, Roya Saberi-Nejad Nonbakht, and Nagmeh Shahsavandi Shirazi.

Roya Saberi Negad Nobakht, 47 year Iranian British woman, from Stockport, Greater Manchester, was arrested in the south-western city of Shiraz while visiting friends in the city of Shiraz.

The oldest is a 62-year old women and the youngest is 21-year-old man. The ruling by the high court is not clear in each individual sentencing terms but it is believed that they are sentenced between 8 to 21 years in prison.

They were originally arrested around the end of summer 2013 by the cyber police in Iran.

The official news agency IRNA then reported: ““Two of them were sentenced to 18 years and 91 days and 19 years and 91 days in prison respectively, with 50 lashes and fines of 1.3 million tomans ($500). Others in this case were sentenced to 21, 14, 20, 8, 11 and 16 years in prison.”

The Iranian regime’s Cyber Police are responsible for monitoring cyber activities. Their most notorious case was that of blogger Sattar Beheshti whom they killed in custody.

While social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are banned in Iran, some Iranian officials, including Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, have Facebook and Twitter accounts.