Tehran, Iran, Aug. 15 –
Tehran’s Islamic Revolutionary Prosecutor Saeed Mortazavi announced on Monday that a human rights lawyer
who had been representing the family of a slain Canadian-Iranian
photojournalist was a spy and that the Revolutionary Court had issued a
decree stating that it was lawful for him to be imprisoned until his eventual
Judiciary agents and armed police had raided the residence of Abdolfattah Soltani and he was
subsequently arrested and taken to Tehran’s notorious Evin Prison several weeks ago on the orders of
Prosecutor-General Saeed Mortazavi.
“Soltani’s arrest was carried out with the
announcement of the charge and a report by the Ministry of Intelligence and
Security and the ministry’s counter-espionage division. Adequate reasons and
documents were given [for the charge] that secret and classified national
intelligence was leaked to unqualified people and those connected to foreign
embassies”, Mortazavi told reporters.
“Yesterday, I was informed that the Revolutionary
Court had issued a verdict and approved his
temporary detention and rejected Soltani’s
complaint”, he said.
“Soltani, being a lawyer and familiar with the law,
has not been willing to answer some 65 or 66 questions by the Ministry of
Intelligence regarding his actions and the materials he had. All these
questions have been reported as without the defendant’s answer
and have been sent to the public prosecutor’s office”.
Earlier this month, the government-owned daily Kayhan
said that Soltani had been charged with giving away
secrets. “Abdolfattah Soltani’s
most serious charge is that he was a nuclear spy”, Kayhan
wrote in a front page article.
Soltani was one of the lawyers for the family of
slain Iranian-Canadian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi,
who was murdered in Evin Prison in July 2003. There
have been suggestions that Prosecutor Mortazavi was
Kazemi’s killer and during one of the hearings in
the case, Soltani clearly pointed the finger at him
for the murder.
Kayhan said that Soltani
had used his position as a lawyer to obtain information from clients who were
being tried on cases related to national security. He would then hand over
the information to “hostile opposition groups to expose such highly secret
information”, Kayhan, which has close ties to the
country’s security and intelligence services, wrote.
“Soltani has committed treason”, the article added.