Iran Sentences Prominent Sociologist To Nine Years In Prison

RFE/RL's Radio Farda

The Islamic Revolutionary Court of Tehran has found a prominent Iranian sociologist and journalist guilty of "forming and managing antiestablishment groups" and of "propaganda against the Islamic Republic of Iran" and sentenced him to nine years in prison -- eight for the first charge and one for the second.

The accusations against 61-year-old Saeed Madani are mainly based on the materials published by him describing and explaining various aspects of Iranian society, a source told RFE/RL.

In January, Madani was prevented from leaving Iran to begin a one-year research program at Yale University in the United States. He has published several studies on social issues in Iran, including violence against women, child abuse, prostitution, and poverty.

The publication of some of Madani's books has been banned in Iran.

In a letter sent last year to Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Mohammad-Mehdi Esmaili, Madani protested against the banning of the publication of his books without a court order.

He has been imprisoned several times before for membership in the banned Nationalist-Religious Alliance political opposition group and for "propaganda against the state."

In 2016, he was exiled to the southern port city of Bandar Abbas after four years of an eight-year prison sentence served at Tehran's notorious Evin prison.

Written by Ardeshir Tayebi based on an original story in Persian by RFE/RL's Radio Farda