Toronto Filmmaker Mostafa Azizi Sentenced to Prison in Iran

Toronto Filmmaker Mostafa Azizi Sentenced to Prison in Iran
Mostafa Azizi, a Toronto-based screenwriter and producer, has been sentenced to eight years in an Iranian prison.

As the CBC reports, Azizi was sentenced on Monday and found guilty of charges of collusion against Iran and insulting the supreme leader. The charges are based on some of Azizi's social media posts.

Azizi emigrated to Canada in 2008, and has permanent resident status. He recently travelled back to Iran to visit family members, where he was arrested and held in solitary confinement at a Tehran prison. He now faces eight years behind bars, though he plans to appeal the case.

Parastoo Azizi, Mostafa's daughter, spoke to the CBC. "I'm still in shock," she said. "My dad is innocent.... He hasn't done anything wrong."

According to CBC contributor Sima Sahar Zeheri, it's unclear which of Azizi's social media posts landed him in hot water. Regardless, she says he was an integral figure in Toronto's Iranian community and will be missed. 

"It's a very sad day for Iranian Canadians to see someone who was part of our community, who was part of our neighbourhood, who was very active face something as draconian as eight years in Iranian prison," she said.

Mostafa Azizi is the director of Alternate Dream Productions.