Iran’s regime has filed new charges against Iranian-American Karan Vafadari and his wife Afarin Nayssari.
The charges, revealed by Vafadari’s sister Kateh, include attempting to overthrow the Islamic Republic and recruiting spies through foreign embassies. They were denied access to counsel for months and held for extensive periods in solitary confinement.
During intensive interrogations, Afarin Nayssari was told to spy on her friends in the art world and her husband; when she refused, she was returned to solitary confinement.
The couple, who own an art gallery in Tehran, were arrested by Revolutionary Guards intelligence officers in July 2016, ostensibly for serving alcohol in their home and hosting mixed-gender parties.
Kateh Vafadari said Revolutionary Court Judge Abolghasem Salavati reinstated charges that had been dropped by the prosecutor for lack of evidence. He reportedly refused the presence of the couple’s lawyer.
Although Iran released four Americans in January, when implementation of the deal over its nuclear program was announced, it has detained and imprisoned lengthy sentences on a series of dual nationals. Those imprisoned include American-Iranian oil executive Siamak Namazi and his 80-year old father, Canadian-Iranian former UNESCO official Baqer Namazi; Lebanese-Iranian activist Nazar Zaka; Iranian-American Robin Shahini; and Anglo-Iranian charity worker Nazanin Zaghari-Radcliffe.