Iran: Former President’s son released from prison after seven years

The son of former Iranian President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani has been released after serving more than seven years of a ten-year prison sentence for fraud, according to Iranian media.

Mehdi Hashemi, 53, was released from Tehran’s Evin prison late Tuesday, according to his lawyer Vahid Abolmaali, as quoted by the ISNA news agency.

ISNA reported that state prosecutors said his release was “conditional”.

Hashemi was convicted of fraud, embezzlement and undermining national security in August 2015, charges he had previously denounced as “politically motivated”.

He had served as a senior official in Iran’s oil sector in the mid-2000s, a period when Norway’s Statoil and French energy company Total were suspected of paying bribes to obtain access to the Islamic republic’s hydrocarbon reserves.

In 2018, a Paris criminal court found Total guilty of “corruption of a foreign public agent” for payments made to Hashemi for help in securing rights to the huge South Pars offshore gas field which Iran shares with Qatar in the Gulf.

 

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