Iran sentences Christian convert to 3 years in prison for “insulting Islamic sacred beliefs”

by Bryan Brammer · Jan 27th, 2020 12:06 pm

The Iranian court sentenced a 65-year-old Christian convert to three years in prison on January 11 for "insulting Islamic sacred beliefs," according to religious freedom watchdog group Article 18.

Ismaeil Maghrebinejad was arrested at his home last January after local authorities discovered he had forwarded a message on his phone that allegedly insulted Iranian religious leaders.

Maghrebinejad is currently being tried for two other charges: "propaganda against the Islamic Republic" and "membership of a group hostile to the regime."

An additional fourth charge was dropped last November, in which he was accused of apostasy after he converted to Christianity. According to Iranian law, this offense is punishable by death.

Maghrebinejad has been repeatedly harassed by Iranian security officials ever since he converted to Christianity 40 years ago.