Iranian Christian Ebrahim Firouzi has reportedly been sentenced to an extra 5 years in prison for “anti-state activities”. He is in jail in Karaj despite the fact that he has served his prison sentence. Ebrahim, who was due for release on January 13, is said to be waiting for his release order. He was sentenced to one year in jail and two years’ exile in a remote border town for his Christian activities (Prayer Alert, August 22). Pray that God will be with Ebrahim and his family. (Source: Mohabat News) International Christian Concern Note: Last week, Ebrahim Firouzi was sentenced to one year in prison and two years of exile in a remote border town in Iran for his work as a Christian “evangelist.”The Revolutionary Court noted he had created a Christian website, brought Bibles into the country, and was operating with house churches, which it described as a “criminal act.” Iran remains one of the most difficult nations in the world for Christians to live and those bold enough to share their faith risk years of imprisonment.
8/20/2013 Iran (BosNewsLife) – An Iranian court has sentenced a young evangelical Christian to one year imprisonment and two years exile to a remote border town for his involvement in evangelism and house churches, Iranian Christians told BosNewsLife Tuesday, August 20.
The Revolutionary Court in the city of Robat-Karim, some 27 kilometers (17 miles) southwest of Tehran, reportedly told Ebrahim Firouzi that his “Books (Bibles), and other means of evangelism taken from him, including his personal computer, which were used to commit this crime will be seized in favor of the government and destroyed.”
Judge Ali Babaei allegedly said the sentence was justified as Firouzi had been “propagating against the Islamic regime [by] starting and directing an evangelism group, contact with opponents of the Islamic Revolution and anti-Islamic regime networks in foreign countries”.
He added that Firouzi started a Christian website, distributed evangelical books and Bibles which were smuggled into the country, “and so maintained his position as an anti-Islamic Revolution agent inside the country.”
Babaei also noted that the Christian “attended illegal house-churches in order to promote evangelical Christianity,” according to court documents released by Mohabat News, a news agency of Iranian Christians and activists.
HOUSE CHURCH “CRIMINAL”
The judge said said holding house church services was “a criminal act which spreads profligacy among youth and creates doubts in their minds about Islamic principles.”
Therefore “the court sentences [you] to one year of imprisonment including the days already served…[and after that you are] condemned to spend two years in exile in the border town of Sarbaz in Sistan and Baluchestan province,” the Christian was told.
The town of his exile, Sarbaz, has a 70 pecent Sunni Muslim population, according to estimates.
Trial observers told BosNewsLife the Christian young man had not been able to afford to hire a lawyer.
The court ruling, which was delivered directly to him last week, came as a major setback for Firouzi, who was recently released after paying 30 million Tomans ($20,000) following 53 days behind bars.
|Image Source: Mohabat News|
Ebrahim Firouzi of Robat-Karim was accused of starting and directing an evangelism group, launching a Christian website, distributing Bibles and Christian literature and attending house churches. The judge described such activities as “propagating against the Islamic regime” and said that Ebrahim was “an anti-Islamic Revolution agent inside the country”.
He was tried in July, and the court’s verdict was delivered to him last week. It said:
According to the court’s decision, evangelism activities of the accused, Ebrahim Firouzi, are considered to be in opposition to the regime of the Islamic Republic of Iran, and thus the court condemns him to one year of imprisonment.
He had previously been in trouble with the authorities because of his Christian activities; Ebrahim spent 154 days in custody following his first arrest in January 2011.
He along with Sevada Aghasar who was detained in Karaj last August are in Evin Prison,Tehran.