Why was there no appeal against VUB Prof's death sentence?

It has emerged that the lawyer of the jailed Iranian academic, who is a guest lecturer at the Flemish Free University of Brussels, never filed an appeal against his client's death sentence. There is speculation that there is collusion between the lawyer and the judge.

Prof Ahmadreza Djalali was sentenced to death after 19 months in an Iranian prison. The Iranian-Swedish academic was sentenced to death last October after being found guilty of co-operating with enemy states and activities threatening Iranian national security. The VUB academic asked his lawyer to appeal to a higher court, but this didn't happen.

His VUB colleague Gerlant van Berlaer says: "The only explanation can be that his so called lawyer colluded with the Iranian Revolutionary Court, which convicted Djalali after physical and psychological torture". Since his sentencing VUB colleagues and Amnesty International have been trying to safeguard his rights. "Despite pressure from Belgian, Swedish and Italian academics, diplomats and politicians his rights are still being violated" Gerlant van Berlaer says.