Iran hangs ‘sultan of coins’, accomplice for corruption

Two men sentenced to death for corrupt economic practices were hanged in Tehran early Wednesday morning, the Judiciary’s Mizan news agency reported.

Vahid Mazlumin, known as the “sultan of coins”, and his accomplice Mohammad Ismail Qasemi, also known as Mohammad Salem, had been convicted of “spreading corruption on earth”, a capital offense under the Islamic law.

According to Mizan, the court had found them guilty of forming “a corruption network, disrupting the country’s economic, foreign currency and monetary system by carrying out illegal transactions and major smuggling of foreign currencies and coins.”

They had been sentenced to death by a special court set up in August to confront profiteering and corruption in the wake of new US sanctions on Iran. The ruling had been upheld by the Supreme Court.

Eleven more defendants in the case have received jail terms of up to 10 years, Judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejei said on Saturday.

The special courts were set up on the request of the Judiciary chief from Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei who has called for “swift and just” legal action to confront an “economic war” by foreign enemies.

It came amid a public outcry against profiteering and corruption after Washington’s reimposition of sanctions on Iran in May unleashed a frenzy of illegal trading in hard currencies or gold.

The sanctions target Iran’s purchase of US dollars, its trade in gold and other precious metals as well as its automotive and aviation sectors.

According to the Judiciary spokesman, 96 people have been arrested for manipulating the currency and gold market. Media reports say Mazlumin had been caught with two tonnes of gold coins.

On the request of Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Sadeq Amoli Larijani, Iran’s special tribunals were set up in August for two years and directed to hand down maximum sentences to those “disrupting and corrupting the economy.”

“Given the current special economic conditions that are considered a kind of economic war and, unfortunately, some of those disrupting and corrupting the economy also provide for the enemy’s goals and commit crimes that require urgent and rapid action, if you see fit, please allow the head of the judiciary to act within the framework of the penal code … on those disrupting the economic system,” the Judiciary chief wrote to Ayatollah Khamenei at the time.

Source: Press TV


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