(Article18) — Sixty-five-year-old Iranian Christian convert Ismaeil Maghrebinejad has had his three-year jail sentence for “insulting Islamic sacred beliefs” overturned on appeal.
Ismaeil was informed of the verdict yesterday by his lawyer, Farshid Roofoogaran.
In the verdict, dated 5 July, the judge at the 17th Branch of the appeal court in Shiraz, Jamshid Kashkouli, accepted Mr Roofoogaran’s defense that Ismaeil had not been the originator of a social media joke insulting Islamic clerics – he had only responded with a smiley face emoji – and that anyway the clerics themselves are not considered “sacred” in Islam.
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