Advertisement

  1. ITV Report

Iran confirms five-year prison sentence for British mother despite husband's campaign

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe with her husband and daughter Credit: Richard Ratcliffe

A British-Iranian mother held in Iran since last year has had her five-year jail sentence confirmed despite her husband's campaign to bring her home.

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe was held by police while trying to leave the country with her baby daughter, Gabriella, in April 2016.

A five-year prison sentence 'on security charges' was today finalised, according to Iranian news agency Mizanonline.ir, which is affiliated with the country's judiciary.

Richard Ratcliffe takes part in vigil outside the Iranian Embassy Credit: PA Images

Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe, who works for the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, had her passport seized and as Iran does not recognise dual nationality, consular assistance is limited.

Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe's parents were said to be in "deep shock" at the decision.

They had received private reassurances they matter would be resolved, according to a statement issued by her husband Richard Ratcliffe after the decision.

The lack of justice in Nazanin’s case continues to be a stain on Iran. The continued attempt to frame Nazanin behind secrets and lies brings shame.

“It is a needless waste of a mother and child’s life for their own political bargains and economic interests.

“I had high hopes for the Minister’s visit to Iran last week, that it was a fresh chance for us, and that justice might be served.

“And yet this ordeal continues, with all its consequences for Nazanin and Gabriella, and for all of us watching on. It is no way to toy with people’s lives. There is no way we will let it rest. Nazanin will not be forgotten."

– Richard Ratcliffe

Mr Ratcliffe once described the sentence as a "punishment without a crime".

Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe was arrested at Imam Khomeini airport and had been accused of "plotting to topple the Iranian regime" but no further details have been given.

PM Theresa May made a personal appeal to the Iranian president to resolve the case in a phone call in August 2016.