Iranian prosecutors have opened criminal cases against six guards of Iran’s notorious Evin prison. This was after footage showing widespread abuse of prisoners at the facility leaked last week.
Zabihollah Khadaeian, a spokesman for the judiciary, stated that “some” guards were placed in detention after a three-day investigation by the judiciary into the conditions and mistreatment at Tehran’s Evin prison. Khodaeian stated that authorities summoned two guards, and also punished others without specifying the penalties or identifying suspects.
The revelation comes days after The Associated Press published parts of the videos and a report about the abuse at the facility in northern Tehran, long known for holding political prisoners and those with ties to the West whom Iran uses as bargaining chips in international negotiations. A self-described hacker group shared the footage and parts of other surveillance video they seized online.
Khodaeian stated that “the scenes shown in the published movies were against the law” and added that the clips leaked had been edited from various scenes over the years.
One part of the footage shows a man breaking a mirror in a bathroom to open his arm. Surveillance cameras captured scenes in which prisoners and guards beat each other. To keep warm, inmates sleep in single rooms with three-foot high bunk beds against the walls.
Iran’s judiciary ordered an inquiry into the abuse after the prison chief admitted that the videos were real. He expressed regret and took responsibility for the “unacceptable” behaviors.
The prison was built under Iran’s shah in 1971. It has been subject to a number of abuses which have continued into the Islamic Republic.