Iran executes five men convicted of gang rape

Tehran killed three more on similar charges in July

The Grand Bazaar in Tehran. Executions are common in Iran, according to rights groups. AFP
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Iran hanged five men convicted of gang-raping a woman in the north-western city of Marand last year, authorities have said.

The men were executed after their sentence was upheld by the Supreme Court, the judiciary's Mizan news reported, citing Marand's public prosecutor.

They were found guilty of kidnapping and gang-raping a woman in East Azerbaijan province after the victim reported her ordeal to the city prosecutor.

Last month, Iran executed three men found guilty of raping women after luring them to a fake cosmetic clinic and injecting them with an anaesthetic.

Executions are common in Iran, which puts more people to death than any other country except China, according to rights groups.

At least 353 people were executed in the first six months of this year alone, the Norway-based Iran Human Rights said last month.

Most are executed on drug-related charges and moharebeh – or enmity against God – a vague charge which has been used to execute anti-regime protesters for joining the popular movement last autumn.

Iran's judiciary is known to hand down the death sentence in speedy, closed-door trials widely seen as unlawful and without due process.

In one case, a young protester was given 15 minutes to plead his case before being sentenced to death, convicted of murdering a security guard during the demonstrations.

Members of the Baloch minority made up 20 per cent of those executed so far this year, and juvenile offenders are also often put to death.

British-Iranian national Ali Reza Akbari was executed by Tehran in January after being convicted of spying for Britain, promoting renewed UK sanctions.

Mr Akbari formerly served as Iran's deputy defence minister and was accused of involvement in the assassination of senior nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh.

Tehran often levels accusations of espionage against dissidents and dual or foreign citizens.

Updated: August 09, 2023, 9:23 AM