Ebrahim Hamidi is an 18 year-old Iranian who was recently arrested two years ago on charges of homosexual assault on a man, and attempting to sexually abuse him.
Now, despite the fact that Hamidi is not homosexual and the alleged victim admitted he had been pressured into making false accusations, Hamidi is on the verge of being executed by the government of Iran.
It’s nothing new, Iran having some harsh penalties for gay men. From the Guardian article that brought this story to my attention:
A person convicted of homosexuality in Iran can be lashed, hanged or stoned to death. The law includes a variety of penalties for different acts: 99 lashes if two unrelated males sleep “unnecessarily” under the same blanket – even without any sexual contact. A boy raped by an adult man would also be lashed if the court decided that he had “enjoyed” the experience.
After three days of imprisonment and torture, Ebrahim Hamidi confessed to the crimes for which he had been falsely accused. Three of his friends, who were arrested with him for the same crime that was apparently never committed, were cleared of all charges after allegedly agreeing to testify against Hamidi.
The worst part of all of this is that despite the alleged victim admitting that he had been pressured to make false accusations, the judge has the authority to sentence Hamidi to death on the basis of the “judge’s knowledge” of his alleged sodomy, even though there is absolutely no conclusive evidence.
Now, it would be bad enough if Hamidi was a gay man, caught engaging in sodomy with another man, and sentenced to death for that offense. It’s horrifying to know that in some countries around the world, having sex with someone of your gender is still a crime punishable by death. But it’s even worse when you realize that this man didn’t even commit the crime for which he was convicted, and the judge is sentencing him to death with no evidence whatsoever.
Remind me never to visit Iran… And let’s hope that the pressure of worldwide decency and justice can help prevent this senseless execution, based purely on one prejudiced judge’s whim.