Jason Rezaian, the Washington Post correspondent in Tehran who was detained for more than 14 months, has been convicted in Iran.
Court spokesman Gholam Hossein Mohseni-Ejei announced in a state TV report Sunday that Rezaian had been found guilty in an espionage trial that ended two months ago, reports The Washington Post.
It’s still unclear what Rezaian has been convicted of. He faced four charges, including espionage, and up to 10 to 20 years in prison, according to The Washington Post. His sentence also remains unknown, and the court spokesman himself said, “I don’t have the verdict’s details.”
Rezaian, a dual American-Iranian citizen, was arrested at his home in Tehran in July 2014, along with his wife, Yeganeh Salehi, who has since been released. Rezaian, meanwhile, remained imprisoned for more than 445 days – longer than any Western journalist has ever been held in Iran – in extreme isolation and without access to a lawyer, according to his family and The Washington Post.
Rezaian, his newspaper and his loved ones have continually denied any wrongdoing on his part.
Washington Post Executive Editor Martin Baron called the verdict an “outrageous injustice” and condemned Iran’s secrecy in the trial.
“Iran has behaved unconscionably throughout this case, but never more so than with this indefensible decision by a Revolutionary Court to convict an innocent journalist of serious crimes after a proceeding that unfolded in secret, with no evidence whatsoever of any wrongdoing,” Baron said in a statement Monday. “For now, no sentence has been announced.”
He added that the newspaper was working with Rezaian’s family and lawyer to seek an appeal.
The journalist’s brother, Ali Rezaian, said he and his family found the guilty verdict “disappointing” but “not surprising.”
“It follows an unconscionable pattern by Iranian authorities of silence, obfuscation, delay and a total lack of adherence to international law, as well as Iranian law,” he said in a statement Sunday. “The Iranian government has never provided any proof of the trumped up espionage and other charges against Jason.”
“Jason was simply a journalist doing his job and following all the rules when he was wrongly arrested and imprisoned in Tehran’s infamous Evin prison,” Ali added. “He is an innocent man that has been kept under harsh conditions to the detriment of his health and well-being for nearly 450 days.”
“We remain hopeful that Jason will soon be released and reunited with this family.”