Phillipine National at Vakilabad Prison Appeals for Help

Nov 17, 20100 comments

The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran has received a letter from a man who identifies himself as Ernie Guienoo Tamonde, a citizen of the Philippines. Tamonde wrote that he is being held inside a prison in Mashad on drug charges but professes his innocence. For months the Campaign has been reporting about allegations, from former prisoners and other reliable sources, of secret group executions inside Vakilabad prison in Mashad. Amongst those reportedly executed were foreign nationals from Ghana and Nigeria who allegedly did not have access to their embassies or a lawyer during their trials or before their executions. The Campaign wrote a letter today to Philippines Foreign Secretary, Alberto G. Romulo, expressing concern that Tamonde could face execution without proper representation and urged his government to publicly disclose any information it may have on Tamonde’s case. Sources told the Campaign that throughout 2009 and 2010 prison officials conducted dozens of group executions of reportedly hundreds of inmates. Officials do not inform the inmate’s lawyer or family members prior to implementing the sentence. The inmates themselves are not unaware that it is their turn to be executed until their name is announced within the officials just before the sentence is implemented. Many of those executed we sentenced for drug-related crimes. Over 600 people remain on Vakilabad’s death row. Some alleged they were tortured by authorities into making confessions.