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Iran's Judiciary Announces New Charges Against Baghaei

Former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (C) welcoming his close aid Hamid Baghaei just after his release from detention, on July 26, 2017.
Former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (C) welcoming his close aid Hamid Baghaei just after his release from detention, on July 26, 2017.

Tehran’s Prosecutor-General has characterized recent comments made by former president Ahmadinejad’s deputy as “unprecedented” and “war declamation”.

A new indictment “comprised of thirty pages has been prepared against Hamid Baghaei and it will soon be delivered to the court,” Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi said.

Baghaei, who was released on July 26 after a two week detention, immediately made public remarks harshly attacking Iran’s judicial authorities and prison conditions. At one point, he went as far as saying, “we know you’ll be overthrown soon”.

Baghaei was deputy president for executive matters during Ahmadinejad’s second term of presidency, but after leaving the government he was charged for breaking the law while in office.

Now, five new offenses have been added to his case, Iran Students News Agency quoted Jafari Dolatabadi as saying.

Referring to Baghaei and his supporters’ “unprecedented behavior and comments” after he was released from detention, Jafari Dolatabadi maintained, “The Prosecutor-General’s office has so far shown self-restraint toward Mr. Baghaei’s claims and war declamations to avoid sidestepping the law.”

Whoever is charged with breaking the law “should defend himself against the charges at a court of law, not by declamations of war against the justice department,” Jafari Dolatbadi reiterated.

Furthermore, he cautioned: “Take the cotton out of your ears, wake up from your deep lethargy, because criminal acts including defamation and spreading lies are punishable by law”.

Earlier on July 27, Jafari Dolatabadi had also said that a new legal case has been filed against Baghaei and soon will be delivered to the court of law.

Baghaei’s vitriolic remarks on July 26 were filmed and widely distributed on social media.

Meanwhile, Former President Mahmud Ahmadinejad, in a letter, threatened to disclose the “cowardly scenario” leading to the arrest of his longtime aide, Hamid Baghaei, by “bands of power and wealth.”

The full text of his letter was published on July 31 on the website of his political movement, Government of Spring.

Ahmadinejad, without mentioning any names, adds in the letter that people with power and wealth have a sinister plan against the leading figures who served in his administration.

Simultaneously, the prosecutor at Iran's Supreme Audit Court, Fayyaz Shojaei announced on July 30, “Seven verdicts have been issued against former Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad for mishandling billions of dollars”.

The Supreme Audit Court is not under the jurisdiction of the country’s judiciary but rather is an institution accountable to parliament, with limited prosecutorial and sentencing powers.

The judiciary claims that it, too, has a pending case against Ahmadinejad, but details have never been released and no court proceedings have taken place.