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Iranian prisoner dies of 'joy' after death penalty commuted

Police take security measures after gunmen opened fire at Iran’s parliament and the shrine of Ayatollah Khomeini in the capital Tehran, Iran on June 7, 2017 [Fatemeh Bahrami/Anadolu Agency]
Iranian police in Tehran, Iran on June 7, 2017 [Fatemeh Bahrami/Anadolu Agency]

An Iranian man suffered a deadly heart attack after learning that he no longer faced the death penalty for a murder he committed 18 years ago, the state-run Hamshahri newspaper reported yesterday.

The paper said 55-year-old Akbar, who hails from southern Iran, was arrested 18 years ago on charges of premeditated murder.

After learning that the victim's family had pardoned him and that he no longer faced the death penalty, Akbar suffered a heart attack as a result of being "overjoyed" and died, the paper said.

The paper quoted sources familiar with the case as saying that Akbar had spent all these years in fear of being executed for committing the murder at the age of 37.

The sources added that officials in the state's dispute resolution board were able to convince the victim's family to pardon him, but he died before being released.

READ: Iran nuclear deal draft puts prisoners, enrichment, cash first; oil comes later – diplomats

Updated on 22 February 2022 at 12.15GMT to clarify that the death sentence had been commuted not abolished.

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