Iran's revolutionary government today executed three more member of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi's police force, the state radio reported, following an announcement Thursday sanctioning the death sentence again for political crimes.
When announcing the reinstatement of the death penalty, the government also announced that the trials of political prisoners could start immeidiately under new regulations. Amir Abbas Hoveyda, prime minister to the ousted shah for 13 years, was expected to be in the first group to be tried, the Tehran newspaper Etelaat reported Thursday.
Iranian Radio identified the executed men as SAVAK interrogators Muhmoud Shaeedi and Kamal Adid and police officer Mahmoud Asgarizadeh. The radio account indicated the three men were tried recently and convicted but their sentences were delayed pending the court reforms.
At least 49 officials of the shah's government have been executed by firing squads following the February revolution before Iran's unofficial leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, suspended secret trials executions last month.
At least 49 officials of the shah's government were executed by firing squads following the February revolution before Iran's unofficial leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, suspended secret trials and executions last month.
Word that political trials could resume immediately came from Deputy Prime Minister Amir Entezam, who said the new regulations had been approved by Iran's secret revolutionary Council. He also confirmed that a new constitution was being drawn up for the Islamic Republic of Iran and that a new parliamentary elections would be held within the next three months.
According to the new islamic legal code, punishments for those foudn guilty of "counterrevolutionary" acts, torture, consolidating the shah's rule and other such offenses include hanging, exile, imprisonment and the confiscation of property.
Sentences must be carried out within 24 hours of being handed down.
Informed legal sources said the first trials were expected to begin on Saturday.
Etelaat said other members of the group facing trial under the new rules included the last head of the Shah's SAVAK secret police, Gen. Nasser Moqadam; former Air Force chief Gen. Amir Hossein Habil; former Tehran mayor Golam Reza Nikpay, and the former head of Air Force counter-espionage, identified only as Gen. Berenjian.
The new regulations did not say whether the accused would be allowed a defense lawyer, an idea derided by Khomeini in a recent television speech. The right of appeal is given only to those tried in their absence.
Trials will be open to the public, unless the presiding judge-a Moslem clergyman-decides otherwise, the published text said.
About 1,300 political prisoners are being held in Tehran's main Qasr prison, according to the public posecutor's office and Iranian human rights lawyers.
No figures for the total number of political prisoners in Iran have been published, but official and unofficial sources estimated that about 2,000 persons are in prison on political charges while the government wants another 16,000 for questioning in connection with their activities under the shah.
The new regulations gave Khomeini a crucial role in the political trials, but did not specify whether he will confirm the sentences passed by the courts. He will approve the nominations of prosecutors and the head of the tribunal and decide when to disolve the special courts.