Mr. Rajavi: Karbaschi's conviction a heavy blow which will escalate mullahs' power struggle

This morning, Tehran's mayor Gholam-Hossein Karbaschi was convicted of embezzlement of public funds and corruption. He was sentenced to five years in jail, 20-year ban on seeking public office, a suspended sentence of 60 lashes, a one-billion-rial fine and reimbursement of 17 billion rials of Municipality funds.

Mr. Massoud Rajavi, President of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, said in this regard: The verdict is a heavy blow by mullahs' leader Ali Khamenei to Khatami's faction and will exacerbate the power struggle within the troika leadership of the regime and undermine as never before the ruling theocracy in its totality.

Mr. Rajavi stressed: The conviction of Karbaschi, a cabinet member for 10 years, is a clear testament to the astronomical dimensions of corruption and graft in all levels of the clerical regime. It became clear during the trial that highest officials, from Khamenei and Rafsanjani to successive Interior Ministers, were fully aware of Karbaschi's actions and themselves involved in plundering public funds.

The NCR President reiterated: The proceedings laid bare before the whole world that a court where a criminal mullah by the name of Gholam-Hossein Mohseni-Eje'i plays the roles of the prosecutor, the chief judge, the presiding judges and the jury, all at the same time, can only be compared with medieval tribunals.

Mr. Rajavi added: Karbaschi's conviction is reminiscent of the shah's last few months in power, when in order to forestall his regime's fall, he resorted to prosecuting and imprisoning a number of government officials. But those trials only expedited his regime's overthrow.

Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
July 23, 1998

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