Behnam Irani, a 41-year-old pastor from Kraj, Iran, was convicted of crimes against national security in January 2011 and sentenced to one year in prison. After voluntarily surrendering to authorities on May 31 to begin his sentence, he learned that he would be forced to serve five years in connection with a previous conviction.
Officers from the Ministry of Intelligence and National Security (MOIS) raided Iraniís house church on April 14, 2010, and assaulted him before taking him into custody. Although he was released on bail two months after his arrest, he later received the one-year prison sentence.
When Irani voluntarily began serving his sentence in May 2011, he was prepared to spend one year in prison. But he received a letter in October stating that he must now serve five years from his previous sentence.
Irani was first arrested in December 2006 and tried for crimes against national security. He was released in January 2007 but was soon re-arrested, tried and sentenced to five years in prison. Irani was never called to serve the sentence that is now being held against him.
Irani became a pastor in 2002, 10 years after becoming a Christian. Please pray for his wife and two children as they wait for him to return home.
You may also write a letter of encouragement to Pastor Irani to let him know you are praying for him. Please do not speak negatively of the Iranian government in your letter or mention the name of the organization that provided this information.