January 1, 2020
Mohammad Moghisseh, 64, is notoriously renowned among Iranians as a “judge” who issues the longest verdicts in the shortest hearings. For many years, he has been giving harsh sentences to protesters, political activists, intellectuals, ethnic and religious minorities, and journalists.
Foe 38 years, Mohammad Moghisseh has been occupying different oppressive posts in the Iranian regime. alias Also known as Haj Nasser or Nasserian, Moghisseh is currently the head of Tehran’s Public and Revolutionary Court 28th Branch.
Moghisseh was born in Sabzevar. At a young age, he went to the seminary, where he became familiar with some mullahs who later mired the country in collapse and bloodshed. At the time, as a student of Islamic seminary, he succeeded to attract the attention of current officials of the Islamic Republic. However, like many other ayatollahs, he has no record of political activity before the anti-monarchy Iranian revolution in 1979.
Moghisseh’s Initiation to the Iranian Regime’s Oppressive Apparatus
In fact, while many valiant children of the Iranian people joined the struggle against the Shah dictatorship and many people were fallen for freedom and democracy in Iran, he was absorbed with spiritual manuscripts and books. After the downfall of the monarchic dictatorship and the rise of Ruhollah Khomeini, founder of the Islamic Republic regime, to power, he was quickly recruited by oppressive institutions.
In 1982, Moghisseh emerged as a law-enforcement agent in the notorious Evin Prison Third Branch, where he was appointed to serve the regime’s oppressive apparatus as an interrogator and torturer. Reports revealed that Mohammad Moghisseh was personally involved in the execution and torture of many freedom-loving people, including members and supporters of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK).
In 1985, the criminal heads of Iran’s Prisons Organization appointed Mohammad Moghisseh as a supervising prosecutor in Ghezelhesar Penitentiary, another notorious prison in Karaj city. In just one year of service, due to his crimes against political prisoners, he stepped up and became the supervising assistant prosecutor and interim head of Gohardasht Prison in the absence of the chief. His tenure in Gohardasht Prison lasted two years.
Moghisseh’s Hatred for Iranian Dissidents, MEK Members
In 1988, in parallel with the regime’s most horrific crime against humanity, Khomeini’s aides appointed Moghisseh as the assistant persecutor of Evin prison. They intended to remove political prisoners and any concept of resistance in the prison as soon as possible. Notably, the Iranian regime executed around 30,000 political prisoners, mostly PMOI/MEK members and supporters, within August and September of 1988. The prisoners who escaped the massacre have given harrowing testimonies about Moghisseh’s hatred against PMOI/MEK members.
They say that he was playing an active role in sending inmates to the gallows. He crazily insisted on hanging the prisoners affiliated to the PMOI/MEK faster.
Eyewitnesses said Moghisseh was playing a key role in the massacre of prisoners in Evin Prison, and he was saying, “No PMOI/MEK inmates should survive.” According to eyewitnesses’ accounts, Moghisseh said in a session that when hanging prisoners, he personally held their legs, so they died faster. They also said “Judge” Moghisseh was present at the 3-member Death Committee meetings for the execution of political prisoners. Moghisseh was encouraging other criminals to massacre more and faster.
He also showed unprecedented savagery in killing political prisoners. For example, On August 6, 1988, Moghisseh executed political prisoner Nasser Mansouri, who suffered from spinal cord injury. Two days later, in another crime, he barbarically hanged actor Mohsen Mohammad Bagher, who was congenitally paralyzed of two legs. Mohsen Mohammad Bagher has played a famous role as a child in the movie “The stranger and the Fog.”
Moghisseh’s Record of Human Rights Violations
After the mass killing of 30,000 political prisoners, regime officials rewarded Mohammad Moghisseh with a new position. In this regard, criminal mullahs appointed him as a director for the implementation of misogynistic and oppressive rules. Moghisseh’s new mission was targeting the basic rights of women and freedom of information and expression under the pretext of the “head of veil and satellite court in Tehran.”
In the early 21st century, Moghisseh became the head of branch 28 of the Tehran “Islamic Revolutionary” Court. Since that time, he as a “judge” committed new crimes against Iran’s population. Factually, the Iranian regime employed criminal Mohammad Moghisseh to spread fear among society. The new victims of Moghisseh were artists, ethnic and religious minorities, journalists, along with opponents and political prisoners, who were sentenced to the most severe punishments in the shortest trials.
Key highlights of Moghisseh’s human rights violations include the following:
Issuing death sentences for 30 Sunni Kurdish activists during trials lasting less than ten minutes.
In 2009, Moghisseh had a direct role in suppressing the Iranian people’s uprising. The scale of the regime’s crimes against protesters is still unknown and many victims avoid to publicly tell their stories. It is worth noting that several detainees committed suicide after their release.
On April 30, 2011, “Judge” Moghisseh sentenced two PMOI/MEK supporters to the death penalty to show that he is still eager to massacre PMOI/MEK members and supporters. Finally, on January 24 of the next year, Mohammad Ali Haj Aghaei, 52, and Jafar Kazemi, 47, were executed on charges of communication and cooperation with the PMOI/MEK.
“Judge” Mohammad Moghisseh has also shown a barbaric treatment with members of the Baha’i community. In 2010, Moghisseh collectively sentenced seven Baha’i community leaders to 140 years in prison. They were arrested two years earlier when security forces raided their homes in Tehran and Mashhad. In another case, in April 2013, Moghisseh issued 45 years of prison to eight Baha’is in Golestan province during an eight-minute trial.
Moghisseh also didn’t veil his hatred against science and technology. On May 28, 2014, Moghisseh’s sentenced eight Facebook users were sentenced to collective punishment of 123 years in prison.
Criminal Mohammad Moghisseh also took part in spreading the curtain of suppression and suffocation on the entire society. He is also known for ill-treating and cursing defendants even in court sessions. For instance, on May 19, 2019, “Judge” Moghisseh insulted jailed Journalist Massoud Kazemi during the court session. “You have no right to breath; your hands should be cut; you should be blown up with gunpowder poured into your mouth; your pens should be broken,” Moghisseh told Mr. Kazemi.
International Hatred Against Judge Moghisseh
On April 12, 2011, given the role of Mohammad Moghisseh in severe human rights violations against Iranians, the European Union sanctioned him. “Judge, Head of Tehran Revolutionary Court, branch 28. He is in charge of post-election cases. He issued long prison sentences during unfair trials for social, political activists and journalists and several death sentences for protesters and social and political activists,” EU announced in its statement on the same day.
On December 19, The United States also blacklisted two notorious Iranian ‘judges’ who have handed extremely harsh sentences to Iranian dissidents and the brave protesters. In the press conference, Secretary Mike Pompeo emphasized, “The United States will stand and has stood under President Trump with the Iranian people. Our public support, our moral support is important. Our calls for justice matter.”
The Secretary of State also announced, “Today the United States Department of Treasury will sanction two Iranian judges: Mohammad Moghisseh, and Abolghassem Salavati.”
In conclusion, despite the importance of international condemnations and sanctions, but practical moves like launching international investigations, referring the case of human rights abuses by Ayatollahs to the international tribunals, and compelling the regime to accept fact-finding delegations are vital. This is especially true since the regime’s officials avoid announcing the genuine number of the death tolls and the fate of detainees during recent nationwide protests that swept across Iran.