Prisoner Hadi Rostami committed suicide in Ilam prison on 22 October due to the uncertainty of his case in the fifth year of his imprisonment and that his juridical representation letter was not transferred from Orumiyeh, West Azerbaijan province, to Ilam province.

Rostami, from Ilam, was previously sentenced to amputation of four fingers of his right hand on the accusation of “theft”.

A source familiar with the prisoner’s condition confirmed the news to the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN):

“A few months ago, Hadi Rostami was transferred from Bukan Prison to Ilam Prison, where his family lives. During this period, the justice department of Orumiyeh refused to send the juridical representation letter of the case to the justice department of Ilam. He committed suicide by eating pills and glass on Friday night, 22 October, due to his unresolved situation in prison.”

According to this source, Rostami was taken to the prison infirmary in a severe condition and was sent to a hospital outside the prison after a delay of several hours.

Despite the hospital doctors saying he should be hospitalized, he was returned to prison on the orders of prison officials after gastric lavage.

Rostami had previously gone on a hunger strike and wrote a letter addressed to the Prosecutor’s Office of Bukan, the Amnesty Commission of Iran, and the UN Special Rapporteur on Iran:

“I, Hadi Rostami, have been sentenced to the amputation of four fingers of my right hand and payment of several billion [Iranian Tomans] worth of restitution of property under case number 100403 at Branch 1 of the Criminal Court of West Azerbaijan province. I have been in prison for five years now. I have been severely tortured in the offices of the intelligence ministry in several cities, including Orumiyeh, Ardabil, and Bandar-e Anzali.”

The prisoner further stated in his letter that he was not aware of 20 of the 28 thefts mentioned in his case and that the court had ordered the brutal amputation of four fingers of his right hand, regardless of his defence in the court.

Branch 13 of the Supreme Court of Iran has upheld the sentence.

It has also been notified to the Enforcement of Judgments Office of Branch 8 of the Public and Revolutionary Court of Orumiyeh for execution.

At the end of the letter, a copy of which has been available to the Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN), Rostami says: “Over the past few years, I have written several letters to the head of the judiciary, stating that the verdict is completely unfair and requesting that my case be reconsidered, but I have not yet received a response. So, I have taped my lips and have gone on hunger strike in objection to this situation.”

According to the statistics compiled by the KHRN, there are currently six prisoners convicted of “theft” and sentenced to amputation of four fingers of a hand.

These prisoners are the 33-year-old Hadi Rostami, 37-year-old Mehdi Sharafian, 42-year-old Mehdi Shahivand, 35-year-old Shahab Teymouri, 39-year-old Mehrdad Teymouri, and 40-year-old Kasra Karami.