Abdorrahman Boroumand Center

for Human Rights in Iran

Omid, a memorial in defense of human rights in Iran
One Person’s Story

Jamshid Sepahvand


Age: 28
Nationality: Iran
Religion: Non-Believer
Civil Status: Married


Date of Killing: September 23, 1985
Location: Evin Prison, Tehran, Tehran Province, Iran
Mode of Killing: Shooting
Charges: Apostasy; Armed rebellion against the Islamic Republic

About this Case

He opposed the Shah’s regime from early in life, netting him an arrest at only 16.   He would go on to serve on the secretariat of the Fadaiyan Khalq Organization.

Information about Mr. Jamshid Sepahvand is based on an interview with a person close to him. Mr. Sepahvand was married and a high school graduate. During the previous regime, in 1974, he was arrested when he was only 16. He was charged with “acting against the national security” and imprisoned until 1978. After the Revolution, he joined the Fadaiyan Khalq Organization and led the organization’s secretariat. After the split in the organization, he joined the Majority. During the Revolution, he was active in Lorestan. In 1981, he moved to Tehran. He was arrested in November, 1981, in a memorial ceremony for Siamak Asadian (known as Eskandar, a guerilla activist of the Fadaiyan Khalq Organization who was killed in October 1981 during clashes with the Revolutionary Guards). He was detained for nine months which he spent at Khoram Abad and Evin prisons.

The Fadaiyan Khalq Organization, a Marxist-Leninist group, inspired by the Cuban Revolution and the urban guerilla movements of Latin America, was founded in 1971 by two communist groups opposed to the Pahlavi regime. Following the 1979 Revolution, the Organization, which had renounced armed struggle, split over their support of the Islamic Republic and of the Soviet Union. The Fadaiyan Khalq Majority considered the Islamic Republic to be a revolutionary and anti-imperialist regime and supported it. After the spring of 1983, however, the Islamic Republic targeted its members solely because of their political beliefs.

Arrest and detention

Mr. Sepahvand was arrested again on November 9, 1983, along with his wife, in a friend’s house in Tehran (his wife was released from prison one and a half years later). The Revolutionary Guards had a warrant for all the residents of the house, who were also arrested. Mr. Sepahvand was detained at Evin Prison, section 209. He was denied the right to have an attorney or access to his file. His first visitation with his parents took place four months after his arrest, but these visitations were discontinued. According to his cellmates, he was tortured severely and was a symbol of resistance in those years. The interviewee states that a corner of Sepahvand’s eye was torn and one of his hands damaged.


Mr. Jamshid Sepahvand was tried at Evin in the winter of 1985. No further detail is available about the trial. After some time he was interrogated again when some of his friends, who were arrested, disclosed new information about him. Whether or not a second trial was held is not known.


The official charges brought against Mr. Jamshid Sepahvand are unknown. However, individuals familiar with this case state that his charges may have been “membership of the Fadaiyan Khalq Organization, apostasy, atheism, and activism in Kordestan.”

The validity of the criminal charges brought against this defendant cannot be ascertained in the absence of the basic guarantees of a fair trial.

Evidence of guilt

The report of this execution does not contain information regarding the evidence provided against the defendant.


No information is available about his defense.


Mr. Jamshid Sepahvand was executed on September 23, 1985, at Evin Prison. The day before the execution, when his family members went to Evin for visitation, they were taken inside the prison with a minibus and had a face-to-face visitation with him. The defendant asked them if they requested such a visitation. Their negative reply indicated that he was going to be executed.*

Fifteen days later, his family went to Evin to visit. The prison officials gave them his bag and belongings and, only after the family’s persistence, gave them directions to a grave in Behesht-e Zahra cemetery as the location of his interment.


*Generally, visitations took place in the presence of prison guards. Communication with prisoners was done through a telephone from behind a glass divider. Face-to-face visitations (not from behind the glass divider) were rare and, if they occurred without prior request, they could indicate that the prisoner would be executed. 


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