Eye for an eye: Iranian man sentenced to have drops of acid poured onto his face for blinding his lover's husband

An Iranian man who blinded his lover's husband is to suffer a similar fate in a tit-for-tat sentencing - by having acid poured into his eye.

Iran’s Islamic code allows for ‘an eye-for-an-eye, a tooth-for-a-tooth’ retribution - known as 'qisas' - in cases of violent crime.

The convict, named only as Mojtaba, threw acid in the face of his rival Alireza, a taxi driver, after an illicit affair with the victim’s wife, Mojdeh.

Tough justice: Iran's capital, Tehran, where convicted criminals can be sentenced to an eye-for-an-eye punishment

Tough justice: Iran's capital, Tehran, where convicted criminals can be sentenced to an eye-for-an-eye punishment

All three are 25 and live in Qom, Iran’s clerical nerve centre 60 miles south of the capital, Tehran.

The grotesque penalty was passed by a lower court and upheld by Iran’s supreme court, a government daily, Iran, reported this weekend.

The Qom prosecutor, Mostafa Barzegar Ganji, said the victim had used his right to qisas.

'We have asked for forensic specialists to oversee the blinding of the convict,' he added.

Extreme punishments can be waived if the victim chooses to accept 'blood money' in reparation, and ‘eye for eye’ punishments are rarely carried out.

Similarly in capital cases, there have been several instances in Iran and Saudi Arabia where a convicted murderer’s life has been spared at the eleventh hour when their victim’s family has shown mercy.

Qisas sentences infuriate local reformists and are invariably branded as an 'abhorrent' form of 'judicial torture' by international human rights groups.

In August, a Saudi man convicted of paralysing a countryman in a cleaver attack two years earlier was sentenced to have his spinal cord cut as punishment. But it appears the punishment was not carried out.

Two leading Saudi hospitals insisted they would not conduct the operation and the judge later denied that he had seriously considered ordering the mutilation.

He was reportedly persuaded to backtrack by King Abdullah, the Saudi monarch, who wants to clamp down on extremist ideology and improve his country’s forbidding image.

In February last year a university student in Iran was sentenced to be blinded in both eyes for having hurled acid in the face of a female classmate, who refused his proposal of marriage. Again, there has been no reported confirmation that the sentence was carried out.

Ten years ago an Egyptian worker had an eye surgically removed in a Saudi hospital as punishment for disfiguring a compatriot in an acid attack six years earlier.

That was said to be the first time in 40 years that a Saudi court had applied the principle of 'an eye for an eye', local media said at the time.


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