Babak Zarin, Majid and Amir Reza Khoshmanzar given Moharebeh for disabling CCTV
Majid Khoshmanzar, 49, a senior employee of the Traffic Control Center at Mashhad’s Municipality, and his son, Amir Reza Khoshmanzar, a boxing champion, along with another citizen in Mashhad, Babak Zarin, were arrested by the Ministry of Intelligence during nationwide protests in October 2022. Iran’s Judiciary has sentenced all three citizens to Moharebeh (War on God). The precise date of their arrests is not known as it had been kept away from public awareness. According to informed sources, they were arrested just a few days after October 26, 2022, during a commemoration ceremony for slain Mahsa Amini after 40 days.
Amir Reza Khoshmanzar, a boxing athlete who, along with his father, was planning to travel abroad, was arrested by security forces in Tehran and transferred to the Intelligence Ministry’s detention center known as Ward 209 in Evin Prison. Both were then transferred to a detention center under Mashhad’s Intelligence control.
Babak Zarin ran a computer shop in Mashhad’s Tech Complex, where he was arrested by security forces.
Babak Zarin, Majid Khoshmanzar, and his son, Amir Reza Khoshmanzar, the three detainees in Mashhad, were charged with “Moharebeh” by Branch 904 of the city’s Public and Revolutionary Prosecutor’s Office, headed by Ali Soleimani Marshag, for “dismantling CCTV cameras.” A charge that could lead to a death sentence against them. According to certain information, Babak Zarin faced Moharebeh during interrogations, but his lawyer said the charge was dropped in an appeal. However, other sources remain to say that Babak Zarin continues to be charged with Moharebeh. The charges against these individuals date back to mass protests on the fortieth-day after Mahsa Amini’s killing, held on October 26, 2022. The city of Mashhad witnessed a large turnout and Mashhad’s urban traffic cameras were disabled. Therefore, suppressing protesters in Mashhad became very low that day and the scope of protests increased. Iran’s Intelligence officials have charged Majid and Amir Reza Khoshmanzar, and Babak Zarin with torching the optical fiber wires and putting out the Intelligence officers’ control to the urban traffic cameras that led to the indictment of Moharebeh.
No exact information is available about the trial process of these defendants. However, according to a close source, their trial will be held soon.
Since the beginning of nationwide protests in Iran, the Iranian judiciary has issued heavy sentences and brought charges of Moharebeh against protesters. The death sentences of Mohsen Shekari, Majidreza Rahnavard, Mohammad Mehdi Karami, and Seyyed Mohammad Hosseini, were carried out without prior notice and without informing their families. Executing the four protesters arrested in nationwide uprisings is a continuous method to quell the people’s protests. All four had denied the charges against them and stated their severe torture while in detention. None were allowed to have an appointed lawyer or fair trials. Iran publicly hanged Majidreza Rahnavard in Mashhad on December 12, 2022.
Iranian officials pressurize detainees’ families to a point they have to pursue news of their loved ones in secret. Families are threatened that if news about the arrests are made public, they will use the death penalty against the captives. The anonymity of captives has irreparable consequences, and sharing their details creates a barrier to prevent further pressure and torture against them in prison as it is a public concern.
Since the beginning of the nationwide protests in Iran, nearly 30,000 citizens have been arrested in different cities. More than 100 faced the risk of execution based on heavy charges of “Moharebeh,” ” Mofsed-e-filarz,” and “Baghy” (Corruption on Earth, and Rebellion against the Imam or the Islamic ruler.)