Abdorrahman Boroumand Center

for Human Rights in Iran

Omid, a memorial in defense of human rights in Iran
One Person’s Story

Jom'ehkhan Gomshadzehi


Age: 40
Nationality: Iran
Religion: Presumed Muslim
Civil Status: Unknown


Date of Killing: October 30, 2007
Location of Killing: Zahedan Prison, Zahedan, Sistan Va Baluchestan Province, Iran
Mode of Killing: Hanging
Charges: Drug trafficking; Participating in clashes with revolutionary guards and or Bassij brothers

About this Case

News of the arrest and execution of Mr. Jom’ehkhan Gomshadzehi, a resident of Saravan (Sistan and Baluchestan province), was published on the websites of the Entekhab newspaper on August 4, 2007, and IRNA (Islamic Republic News Agency), ISCA News, and Fars News Agency on October 30, 2007.

Arrest and Detention

According to the Entekhab newspaper, quoting the Head of Police, Department to Fight against Narcotics, “the defendant escaped from Saravan to Afghanistan and Pakistan and ultimately chose Dubai for his activities. In July 2007, he was arrested, along with another person, in Tehran when attempting to deal drugs.” According to the same source, the defendant was not armed when arrested.


No information is available on the defendant’s trial. According to ISCA News, “considering the significance of this arrest, the police department wrote a letter to the Head of the Judiciary and demanded a special judicial process for this case.”


According to the Head of Police, Department Specialized to Fight against Narcotics, the charges against Mr. Jom’ehkhan Gomshadzehi were announced as “capturing and killing nine police officers, importing 50 tons of narcotics annually, and exporting part of that to the Persian Gulf countries and Turkey.” According to the same source, “the defendant combated the police when carrying narcotics in 2003 which resulted in killing of an officer and his escape to Dubai. He was leading the drug trafficking operation from Pakistan to Iran through his agents. He imported narcotics into the country from Afghanistan and Pakistan with the help of a group consisting of his brothers and nephews, using tankers. The location of their storage of narcotics was in Kuhsefid, Saravan.”

The validity of the criminal charges brought against this defendant cannot be ascertained in the absence of the basic guarantees of a fair trial. International human rights organizations have drawn attention to reports indicating that Islamic Republic authorities have brought trumped-up charges against their political opponents and executed them for alleged drug trafficking, sexual, and other criminal offences. Thousands of alleged drug traffickers have been sentenced to death following judicial processes that fail to meet international standards. Scores of them were executed based on a 1989 law imposing mandatory death sentences on drug traffickers found in possession of specified amounts of proscribed narcotics (5 kg of hashish or opium, and more than 30 grams of heroin, codeine or methadone). The exact number of people convicted based on trumped-up charges is unknown.

Evidence of Guilt

According to the Head of Police, Department to Fight against Narcotics, “police recovered a total of 10 tons of opium and 400 kilograms of morphine from the defendant during previous years.” Also, according to the same source, “the defendant confessed to smuggling 400 kilograms of morphine and heroin to European countries during the past several years.”

International human rights organizations have repeatedly condemned the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran for its systematic use of severe torture and solitary confinement to obtain confessions from detainees and have questioned the authenticity of confessions obtained under duress. In the case of political detainees, these confessions are, at times, televised. The National Television broadcasts confessions during which prisoners plead guilty to vague and false charges, repent and renounce their political beliefs, and/or implicate others. Human rights organizations have also pointed to the pattern of retracted confessions by those prisoners who are freed.


No information is available on the defense.


The court condemned Mr. Jom’ehkhan Gomshadzehi to death and the ruling was confirmed by the Supreme Judicial officials. He was hanged in the Zahedan prison yard on October 30, 2007.

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