"Personal Speculation" Sparked Guilty Verdict

Iranian Journalist Speaks Out On Gay Man’s Execution

The international press aren’t given much freedom in Iran. Thus, no Western journalists were allowed access to Makwan Moloudzadeh, the gay man the state executed earlier this week. The Iranians claim the 21-year old raped another boy eight years ago, when they were both 13. Moloudzadeh and the alleged victims all denied it, saying any admissions were extracted through torture.

While no American reporter can confirm these details, Tehran-based reporter Mitra Khalatbari offers an eye-witness account of Moloudzadeh’s trial.

The only witnesses who had given statements to the intelligence police saying they had been raped by Makwan came into court and repudiated those statements, saying that they had been extracted under torture.

Makwan himself told the judge that his admission to the Intelligence Police that he had had anal sex with one boy in 1999 was also obtained by torture, and that he now denied it and proclaimed his innocence.

The judge did not bother to order medical examinations to see if rape had taken place, nor did he bother to order medical examinations to see if torture of the witnesses had taken place. The judge’s verdict of guilty, and his sentence of Makwan to death, was based purely on his personal speculation.

Khalatbari wrote an article criticizing the trial’s legitimacy, but her newspaper editors refused to publish the story for fear of being shut down.

The journalist also tells Gay City News that Moloudzadeh protested his imprisonment with a 10-day hunger strike. Prison officials punished him by shaving his head and marching him through the streets, where civilians reportedly pelted him with eggs, stones and sticks. Moloudzadeh never got to say good-bye to his family. Shame.