[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM PERSIAN]

 

[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets]

[Personal information has been redacted.]

 

[Emblem]

Islamic Republic of Iran

Minutes of interrogation

Islamic Revolutionary Court of the Province of Yazd

 

Name:……Surname:……Branch:……Date:……Classification File:…

 

 

Court classification number:  74/2288/D

Appeal number:  74/2312/D-R

 

Date of investigation:  12/10/1374 [2 January 1996]

 

Investigating authority:  Branch 1 of the Islamic Revolutionary Court of Yazd

The particulars of the accused:  Zabihollah Mahrami, son of Gholam-Reza, born in 1325 [1946-1947], a resident of Yazd

 

The nature of the accusations:  Denouncing the religion of Islam and adopting the beliefs of the perverse Baha’i sect; apostasy [of a person who is] Melli[1]

 

Procedural Synopsis:

 

Mr. Zabihollah Mahrami, son of Gholam-Reza, born into a Baha’i family, was a follower of the perverse Baha’i sect until the year 1360 [1981], at which time, while he was an employee of the Department of Agriculture of the Province of Yazd, he recanted [his faith in] Baha’ism in a widely distributed newspaper and announced his acceptance of the true religion of Islam.  Furthermore, he indicated his religion to be Muslim, of the Twelver Shiite, on the form which he completed at the Department of Agriculture in 1364 [1986-1987], on the basis of which he was not dismissed from his government employment.  However, he recently (once again) declared himself to be a Baha’i and indicated that he participates in the gatherings of this sect.  He has also arranged for his daughter to marry a Baha’i individual in Isfahan (as reported by the Department of Intelligence in Yazd in its documents numbers 2696/M/33-[dated:] 23/7/70 [15 October 1991] and 21364/M/33 [dated:] 11/3/1374 [1 June 1995]). Afterwards, on 2/5/1374 [24 July 1995] an instruction was issued by the head of the Islamic Revolutionary Court in Yazd to the Department of Intelligence to take the aforementioned individual to the aforesaid Court during working hours.

 

On 25/5/1374 [16 August 1995] he appeared before the Islamic Revolutionary Court in Yazd and attested to his being born into a Baha’i family and to his attending the [Nineteen Day] Feasts; furthermore, while expressing his doubts about the contents of the paper bearing his signature and the matters written in the form of the Department of Agriculture of the Province of Yazd indicating that he is a follower of the Twelver Shiite of Islam, he stated that the signature at the bottom of the form belongs to him but that he is unaware of the written contents of the form.

 

When asked from whom he receives his instructions, he said, from higher authorities of the Spiritual Assembly, the members of which he does not know, as he receives his instructions through liaisons. In the preliminary stages of the investigation carried out by the Provincial Department of Intelligence, while conveying his remorse for converting to Islam (when he was a Baha’i), he stated that he had forwarded his request to the Baha’i institutions for pardon and to return to the Baha’i community, and that he has been forgiven and is now recognized as a Baha’i by the Baha’i community (pages 33 and 35 of his file).  He does however confess that in the past seven years he did attend mass prayers every once in a while and was truly a Muslim, even though he felt ashamed before his wife and children (pages 40 and 41 of his file).  In several instances, he has denied that he had voluntarily published [in newspapers] his conversion from the perverse Baha’i sect; he even has stated that “because prominent Baha’is were arrested and killed at the beginning of the revolution, my intention was to keep my family and myself safe; however, when it was determined that the Baha’is were no longer being bothered, I became a Baha’i again” (pages 40 and 41 of his file).

 

Because of the negative impact of his accepting the perverse Baha’i sect after being a Muslim for seven years, and based on Sharia law and tradition, the Revolutionary Court in Yazd (Branch 1) endeavoured to hold certain meetings for the purpose of guiding him [to the path of truth) and encouraging him to repent for having committed the most grievous sin, i.e., apostasy.  The first meeting was held on 11/7/1374 [3 October 1995], during which he clearly announced himself to be a Baha’i and a follower of the principles of this sect.  Despite his limited knowledge of the blessed religion of Islam and of the misleading and perverse Baha’i sect, he did not accept the suggestion of this court to receive guidance from well-informed individuals.  In response to the question of the court about what he believes the station of Mírzá Muḥammad-'Ali Báb to be, he responded that the Báb was the Herald of the Manifestation of Mírzá Husayn-'Ali Bahá, Who was also a Prophet sent by God.

 

After he was told that according to the belief of all the sects of Islam, His Holiness Mohammad was the Seal of the Prophets, that [the acceptance] of this fact is one of the essential religious beliefs of the Muslims, and that anyone denying this fact will be removed from the Cause [of Islam], he stated, “I do not know”, even though he had confessed to be of sound mind, had taken full responsibility for his statements and had indicated that he continued to believe in all that he has said.  According to a letter numbered 4564/M/213 dated 11/7/1374 [3 October 1995] from the Department of Intelligence of the Province of Yazd, the father of this individual was born into a Muslim family, became a Baha’i when he got married, and remained a Baha’i until the end of his life and was buried in the Baha’i cemetery of Yazd; his mother was a Baha’i born into a Baha’i family.

 

A second meeting was held on 22/7/1374 [14 October 1995] in the Islamic Revolutionary Court of Yazd for the purpose of guiding him.  When he was asked whether he had reached a decision in the time given to him, he stated that he remains firm in his faith in Baha’ism, that he was indeed a Muslim for seven years, and that he became a Baha’i once again in light of the fact that the members of his family are Baha’is.  When asked if he would become a Muslim if the members of his family convert to Islam, he responded in the negative, indicating that he would remain a Baha’i.  Again, he stated that he accepts Mírzá Husayn-'Ali Bahá as the Prophet of God, that he believes in Him, that he makes these statements with a sound mind and of his own accord, and that he is not willing to return to Islam or to repent for this act of apostasy.

 

The third meeting was held on 28/8/1374 [19 December 1995], in which he repeated his previous statements and, attesting to being of sound mind and in full control [of his faculties], indicated that he does not intend to return to Islam or to repent for having committed the most grievous sin, i.e., apostasy.  Therefore, in light of Question 10 of Book of Miras[2] [Al-Mavaris](p. 366) in the second volume of Tahrirol-Vasyleh written by his holiness Imam Khomeini, the founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran, and Question 1 of the second volume (p.494) of Al-Hodod, and after holding three consecutive meetings for the purpose of guiding him [to the truth], despite the fact that he was given ample time to study the situation and to accept the suggestion [of this court] to be sent to a learned individual for investigation of the shallow foundations of his beliefs, he refused to do so, and, regardless of the tremendous efforts [of this court] to encourage him to repent for having committed the most grievous sin, i.e., apostasy, [the court] did not succeed [in its efforts] because of the enmity and the stubbornness of this individual, he was then asked to select a defence attorney to defend him against these accusations.

 

After introducing an attorney at law [as his defence lawyer], a session of this Branch [of the Revolutionary Court] was held on 12/10/1374 [2 January 1996] with his lawyer also present.  Having heard his own and his lawyer’s defence statements, which were presented both orally and through a written statement, he was given one last chance to defend himself.  The investigation was then announced as having concluded and the following decision was delivered.

 

The Decision of Court:

 

Concerning the charges brought against Mr. Zabihollah Mahrami, son of Gholam-Reza, i.e., denouncing the blessed religion of Islam and accepting the beliefs of the perverse Baha’i sect (apostasy [of a person who is] Melli), in light of his clear admission to the fact that he accepted the perverse Baha’i sect at the age of maturity, later accepted Islam for a period of seven years, and then returned to the aforementioned sect; and because of the fact that, despite the tremendous efforts of this court to guide him and to encourage him to repent for having committed the most grievous sin, he remains firm in his baseless beliefs, and he has, in three consecutive meetings, while being of sound mind and body and in absolute control of his faculties, announced his allegiance to the principles of Baha’ism and his belief in the prophethood of Mírzá Husayn-'Ali Bahá, he has openly denied the most essential [principle] of Islam (Prophet Muhammad being the Seal of the Prophets), and he is not willing to repent for having committed this sin, the following decision was delivered based on the investigation of the Department of Intelligence of the Province of Yazd, and the damaging consequences of his leaving the true religion of Islam and re-joining the Baha’i sect, which, according to indisputable principles accepted by reasonable people, is a clear insult to the beliefs of over one billion Muslims.  By applying to the subject at hand the tenth type of “Nijasat” [impurities], to be found in the first volume of Tahrirol-Vasyleh (p. 118), [to the process of classifying an individual as] an infidel and an apostate, as well as section ten of the book of Al-Mavaris (on the topic of inheritance) and sections one and four of Al-Hodod (on the topic of apostasy) written by the great founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran, his holiness Imam Khomeini, the accused is sentenced to death for being an apostate.  Furthermore, based on section one of Al-Mavaris (on the topic of inheritance), and in light of the fact that he does not have any Muslim heirs,  it was decided that the Yazd Division in Charge of Enforcing the Imam’s Orders is to confiscate all of his properties and assets.

 

This decision was delivered in the presence [of the accused], and can, according to paragraph 19 of the law of Public and Revolutionary Courts, be appealed to the Supreme Court within 20 days from the date of its service on the accused.

 

Fallah

Head of branch 1 of the Islamic Revolutionary Court in Yazd.

 

 

 

[1] [Sharia terminology for a person who was born to non-Muslim parents]

[2] [Inheritance]