Two female journalists sentenced to 3 years in prison

Female journalists Elnaz Mohammadi and Negin Bagheri were sentenced to 3 years in prison and a five-year activity ban in Iran.

Defense lawyer Amir Raisian said that his client, journalist Elnaz Mohammadi, was acquitted in the trial where she was tried on the charge of "collaboration with the foreign government".

Raisian noted that journalists Elnaz Mohammadi and Negin Bagheri were given three-year suspended prison sentences on another charge. The journalists will spend less than a month of their sentence in prison.

However, they will have to attend "professional ethics" courses for five years and could not leave the country.

The Hamemehan and Haft Sobh newspapers protested the decision, while Elnaz Mohammadi's lawyer said: "Elnaz Mohammadi is on trial for 'conspiracy', 'secret agreement to commit a crime' and 'collaboration with a hostile foreign government'. While there was no evidence regarding the charge of 'collaboration with a hostile foreign government', my client and Nagin Bagheri were given a 3-year suspended prison sentence for the charges of 'conspiracy and collusion'."

In addition, the lawyer said, "the 5-year suspension sentence given to these two journalists is subject to the conditions determined by the court. They will have to attend ‘professional ethics’ training courses every season under the coordination and supervision of Ministry of Information officials. The defendants were prohibited from going abroad, carrying out their professional activities, socializing and communicating with foreign media for 5 years."