Iran dilutes law on drugs smuggling penalty
Tehran, Iran, Aug. 13
By Mehdi Sepahvand, Trend:
Iranian lawmakers amended a law on death sentence for drugs smugglers, introducing a less exacting legislature, the Parliament’s website majlestv.ir reported August 13.
According to the new legislature, capital punishment for those convicted of drugs trafficking will be replaced with life imprisonment and fine.
Nevertheless, a previous law on life imprisonment sentence was replaced by one that allows imprisonment sentence (without the life clause) and fine.
The amendment does not apply to armed smugglers, ringleaders and misusers of -18-olds, or convicts with a history of death or +15 years imprisonment sentence.
The bill must still be approved by the conservative-dominated Guardian Council but gained parliamentary approval after months of debate.
According to Amnesty International, Iran was one of the top five executioners in the world in 2016, with most of its hangings related to illicit drugs.
The amendment will apply retroactively, thus commuting the sentences for many of the 5,300 inmates currently on death row for drug trafficking.
Iran bears the brunt of world fight on drugs as it is situated next to the opium wellspring Afghanistan.