Iranian-American Jailed for More Than 12 Years Over Iran Unrest

Iranian-U.S. scholar Kian Tajbakhsh was sentenced to a prison term of more than 12 years after being convicted of having a role in disturbances that followed the disputed June 12 presidential election, his lawyer said.

Houshang Azhari said he received the court’s ruling on his client yesterday, the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency reported. Tajbakhsh is in “satisfactory” condition, said Azhari, who visited him in prison yesterday. An appeal request will be presented to the court, the lawyer added.

Tajbakhsh, who works with the Open Society Institute of George Soros, was arrested July 9. The charges against him included actions against national security, spying and working as a consultant for the Soros organization to design a so-called Velvet Revolution against Iran’s government, IRNA reported.

An Iranian court sentenced three men to death for their involvement in the protests that followed President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s re-election, state-run Press TV reported Oct. 11. Some 4,000 protesters were arrested and more than 140 have been tried on charges of attempting to topple the state after Ahmadinejad’s victory was announced. It isn’t clear how many people remain in detention.

Defeated candidates Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karrubi claimed the election was rigged, spurring days of protests. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Ahmadinejad reject allegations of election fraud and accuse Western powers of stirring the unrest.