51. The Penal Code in Iran divides crimes based on the punishment prescribed for each type of offence. Hudud crimes refer to crimes which are considered sins and which have mandatory punishments provided for in the Koran. Applicable punishments are: the death penalty; crucifixion; stoning; amputation of the right hand and, for repeat offences, the left foot; flogging; imprisonment and exile.

For example, the following crimes are punishable by death: fornication involving a non-Muslim man and a Muslim woman (art. 82) and fornication by a single person involving a fourth act (art. 90), the three previous offences being punishable by 100 lashes of the whip (art. 110); homosexuality (art. 179); and consumption of alcohol as a third offence, the punishment for the earlier offences being 80 lashes of the whip. Because the punishments for hudud crimes are predetermined, judges exercise little discretion in deciding on punishments in these cases. Women are disproportionately charged with hudud crimes related to sexual and moral conduct, such as adultery, and suffer serious consequences in this regard. As will be detailed below, when women are charged with these crimes, they are often unable to refute the charge because of additional discriminatory laws and procedures governing the administration of justice.

Link to full text of the report: Mission report-SR Violence against Women-Iran-2006-eng

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