Iranian coder faces execution 'for building smut websites'
Supreme court backs death penalty for photo upload tool
A programmer faces imminent execution in Iran after the country's supreme court upheld his conviction for "developing and promoting pornographic websites".
Saeed Malekpour, 36, was convicted on the basis of a televised confession he later retracted in a letter sent from prison. His family argue Malekpour made the supposed admissions of wrongdoing under duress; they say he had spent a year in solitary confinement in Tehran's Evin prison, was beaten and was told of threats against his relatives.
According to his supporters, Malekpour's only crime was to write photo uploading software that was later used by pornographic websites without his permission. Malekpour, who has permanent residence status in Canada, has been in prison since he was arrested in October 2008 during a visit to see his terminally ill father.
An international campaign bolstered by fresh testimony from experts led to a decision by Iran's supreme court to suspend Malekpour's death sentence and order a judicial review back in June 2011. But the review produced no effect and Malekpour's death sentence was subsequently reinstated.
Maryam Nayeb Yazdi, a human rights activist based in Toronto who has followed Malekpour's case, told The Guardian: "Saeed is in imminent danger of execution. He has never been provided with a fair trial at any point during this horrific and twisted ordeal.
"There are various discrepancies in Saeed's case file that were supposed to be reviewed and investigated by the revolutionary court, but the judge ignored the discrepancies and reissued the death sentence anyway."
Amnesty International reckons Iran executed at least 600 people last year. It added that Malekpour is being used as a political pawn by hardliners ahead of March presidential elections in the country.
Drewery Dyke, of Amnesty International, commented: "Malekpour is alleged to have created 'pornographic' internet sites and [is accused of] 'insulting the sanctity of Islam', for which he was charged with 'spreading corruption on Earth', a vaguely worded charge which attracted the death penalty in Iran.
"The use of vaguely worded charges is not new in Iran, but the allegation that these were carried out on the internet is. It is an unwelcome addition to the catalogue of ways in which Iran finds it can execute its own citizens.
"In advance of March's parliamentary elections, when you would expect the right to exercise one's freedom of expression to increase, this case exemplifies 'innovative' ways as to how Iran is setting itself against access to online information."
Really sucks to be a dual citizen and Iranian
Iranian-Canadian reporter beaten to death in prison
Iranian-US soldier in prison for spying
Iranian-French actress banned from visiting Iran
and now this guy.
If I were an Iranian living and working in another country, I would make very sure that I never ever went home.
Did you actually RTFA?
"He knew the law and he made his choice"
AFAIK there's no law against writing software to allow you to upload pictures. That someone used his code without him knowing on porn sites is hardly something he can be held liable for.
Rat poison is often used in murder, should the manufacturers of that poision be up for life as well (which is still better than execution)?
I'd say he'd be very lucky if the MPAA kicked down the door and extradited him tomorrow. They may be a bunch of cunts, but at least they won't execute him.
You are so clueless it isn't even funny. No spine? Coming from, in all probability, a cosseted little Westerner writing their dissenting little words of rebellion from the comfort of their home protected from the threat of torture and abduction by their Government that is pretty rich. Most nations ruled by dictators look backwards as it seems easier to keep control of a population by letting them have fuck all.
"Hate to break it to you but no, this is not a distorted view, a place and its society is reflected by the rules and penalties that society lives under - their government."
If so, are all Americans c*nts? No, of course not. Likewise, Iranians probably choose their moments to speak out knowing full well that such a society has unknown numbers of spies and whistleblowers living in their midst. I doubt I'd be too vocal if I knew one wrong word meant the torture of myself and/or my family, and I firmly suspect the same holds true for you.
The Syrians don't seem to like their Government much but it doesn't seem to be working out too well for them does it?