Iran has executed the so-called "Sultan of Coins" and his accomplice for hoarding gold and other hard currency as the country faces an economic crisis in the wake of USA sanctions.
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei earlier permitted Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Sadeq Amoli Larijani to take special measures in order to confront economic corruption and called for "swift and just" legal action against financial crimes.
The courts have handed out at least seven death sentences since they were set up and some of the trials have been broadcast live on television.
The UN, Western countries, and global human rights groups have expressed concerns about the rising number of executions and reported torture incidences in Iran for a variety of alleged offenses, including issues related to religious freedom, women's rights, and economic protests.
Judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejehi said last month the pair were sentenced to death because they had been "spreading corruption on earth".
Per the BBC, Vahid Mazloumin was convicted of hoarding gold coins to manipulate prices.
Iran does not publish official statistics on the number of people it executes.
"The octopus-like network disrupted the economy by buying, selling and smuggling foreign currency and gold coins", Mizan said.
A third person, Hamid Bagheri-Dermani, was also accused of corruption and sentenced to death in preliminary hearings. The ruling had been upheld by the Supreme Court.
At least 32 other people were sentenced to jail terms after related convictions in the case, Iranian media reported.
The rial currency has lost about 70 percent of its value in 2018 under the threat of revived U.S. sanctions, with heavy demand for dollars and gold coins on the unofficial market from ordinary Iranians trying to protect their savings.
The cost of living has also soared, provoking sporadic demonstrations against profiteering and corruption, with many protesters chanting anti-government slogans.
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