Source: En Vero English
Author: S.A. Aram
October 19, 2017
Text edition: Alicia Walcott
Mohammad Ali Taheri sentenced to death penalty
By the request of the Public Prosecutor’s office at the Revolutionary Court Zone 33 in Tehran, Iran, Mr. Mohammad Ali Taheri was charged with “corruption on Earth” for founding a deviational sect called the Cosmic Consciousness Network Institution (or Interuniversal Mysticism). Under these charges, Taheri is accused of leading astray the thoughts and beliefs of tens of thousands of Muslim citizens in various cities. So-called evidence of his alleged misguided teachings was collected from Mr. Taheri’s books, conference notes and audio and video files before being presented in a documentary-style film before the Court.
As per the teachings of the Quran, Hadith, opinions of high-ranking clergy and Ayatollahs, deviating the opinions and beliefs of a vast number of people is considered as enough evidence to charge one with “corruption on earth”. The charge in question was codified in article 286 of the Islamic criminal laws issued in year 1392. Using reports made by the prosecution along with a summary of various “deviant” documents, propaganda CDs and Taheri’s ideological teachings as evidence, Taheri was found guilty . The evidence above was sufficient to overturn the prior stay of execution issued by branch 33 of the Supreme Court. Hence, a court hearing was held and attended by the accused and his lawyers. In that court the lawyers of the accused provided their defense. The prosecution presented a film and documentary in court as well as experts. The defendant was given four months to prepare a defense. The content of the defense was reviewed as well as other evidence provided by prosecution such as books, pamphlets, magazines, and CDs, which are now attached to his file. The members of the court have determined the collective actions of the accused from the deviating sect of cosmic consciousness is considered corruption and based on article 286 of the Islamic criminal law established in 1392 (2013) he is considered a “Corruptor of the Earth” and has been sentenced to death.
The verdict summary is not that of the Court’s but one of his lawyer, Zeiban Taheri, with her letter head. For this reason, information on the prosecution and its associates is unavailable. The verdict is dated August 25, 2017.
20 days were allotted for submission of an appeal however, we are unable to confirm whether or not one was submitted. Attempts made by the family to contact Taheri’s lawyers have been unsuccessful. Mr. Taheri’s wife is the only person corresponding with his lawyers at this time.
Amnesty International Urgent Action:
US Department of State:
In the meantime, Iranian authorities have increased the pressure on his students by arresting Faradarmani masters in the last few months. These include twenty-seven Faradarmani masters, students of Mohammad Ali Taheri, arrested in Mashhad, Iran. Additionally, more than fifty masters and practitioners have been taken into custody or disappeared during July and August 2017.
Thus, on July 1, Mostafa Abed, a Faradarmani master, was taken into custody while he was outside for a walk. The following day, Saeid Hashemi, also a master, was arrested while he was teaching Faradarmani at home. On
July 18, forty Faradarmani practitioners were detained in Najafabad, Isfahan. Five days later, on July 23, another nine practitioners were arrested at their homes in Shahinshahr, Isfahan. And in Shiraz, Saeideh Goudarzi and her daughter have disappeared since July 30; their family believe they have been kidnapped by the IRGC. Another Faradarmani master, Ali Zareh, was arrested on the same day. On August 1, Esmail Dehghan was taken into custody by the Sar-Allah section of the IRGC in Shiraz.
 Book of Hadith are stories attributed to the Profit Mohammed and his off-springs.
 Iran’s year 1392 is 2013. Mr. Taheri was imprisoned in 2011 but this law was issued in 2013, 2 years later. Therefore this law should not apply to Mr. Taheri, legally.
 Mr. Taheri asked for a copy of the film and for a copy of his books so he could prepare his defense, but he was refused.