British-Iranian Jailed For Five Years In Iran


Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe was sentenced on charges that “remain secret”, according to her husband Richard Ratcliffe.

The 37-year-old mother, from Hampstead in north London, was accused of plotting to overthrow the Iranian regime.

She was arrested at Imam Khomeini airport on 3 April as she attempted to return to the UK following a holiday with her daughter Gabriella.

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The girl, now aged two, is being cared for by her grandparents in Tehran.

The five-year sentence was handed down by Judge Salavati of the Revolutionary Court on Tuesday.

The sentence is expected to be served in Tehran’s Evin Prison.

Ms Zaghari-Ratcliffe called her husband today to confirm the sentence, which he described as “a punishment without a crime”.

Speaking over the phone to her husband, Ms Zaghari-Ratcliffe expressed her disbelief at the sentence.

She said: “Five years is ridiculous. For what? We will appeal. But I don’t know how long it will take, how long it will last. Months?

“They said that sometimes you can settle cases on appeal through payment – but not often cases like mine. So I don’t know how long it will go on taking.”

Mr Ratcliffe said: “Nazanin’s detention and charges have always felt like she and Gabriella are being held as a political bargaining chip for internal and international politics.

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“The fact that she was sentenced with unrecognisable charges the day after the UK Embassy was upgraded, makes this all the clearer.

“Why the Revolutionary Guard wishes to manoeuvre the judiciary to announce through me the sentence but not the charges I do not know.

“I told her she has nothing to apologise for. Her head will always be high. She is much loved, over 800,000 people have signed her petition, and I have thousands of messages for her to read one day.

“They keep me going now. They will be so important for her journey back once this cruelty is over.”

“I told her we so look forward to having her home.”

Ms Zaghari-Ratcliff’e’s lawyer has been instructed by her family to appeal against the decision.

No date for the appeal has yet been set.

News Source SkyNews

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