An Iranian prosecutor and an intelligence officer have traveled to Asia, Europe and America in recent years, masquerading as "international boxing referees," IranWire reveals.
Abolfazl Ameri Shahrabi, the deputy prosecutor of the central city of Arak, and Majid Abbaszadeh, a member of the Intelligence Protection Organization of the Joint Staff of the Armed Forces, were dispatched by the Boxing Federation of the Islamic Republic.
Boxing Referee and Judicial Official
On May 8, Mizan news agency, which is affiliated with the judiciary of the Islamic Republic, reported the execution of Sadrullah Fazeli Zarei and Youssef Mehrdad on charges of apostasy and insulting religious and Islamic sanctities.
According to the report, the indictment against these two defendants was issued by Abulfazl Ameri Shahrabi.
Within the Iranian boxing community, he is known as Abolfazl Ameri. Between 1995 and 1998, he was a member of the Iranian national boxing team and served as a referee in the early 2010s.
Concurrently, he pursued legal studies and cultivated ties with government institutions. A source within the Ministry of Sports and Youth describes him as being "loyal to the government."
The name Abulfazl Ameri also evokes dark memories in Arak.
Mehrshad Shahidi, a 19-year-old resident of the city, was a professional chef and student in hotel management who won medals in gymnastics, bodybuilding, volleyball, mountain biking and swimming.
The young cook lost his life on October 26, 2022, after having been brutally beaten by security personnel.
Reports later emerged that over 20 people who attended his funeral were arrested.
Two days after the arrest of the mourners, the Arak Prosecutor's Office ordered the imprisonment and flogging of seven of them.
According to IranWire's sources, Abolfazl Ameri Shahrabi played a direct role in the judicial cases against those arrested.
He has traveled extensively to countries in Europe, Asia and America under the guise of refereeing boxing competitions, and his name has appeared repeatedly in media outlets closely affiliated with the government and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (RGC.)
"In recent months, there has been much speculation about his potential transfer to Tehran. He himself claims that he is preparing to assume a new position in one of Tehran's sensitive judicial centers," the source told IranWire.
Boxing Referee and Intelligence Officer
"Majid Abbaszadeh was unanimously elected as the head of the Tehran Boxing Committee, securing all 22 votes cast," the official IRNA news agency reported on June 30, describing him as a "three-star boxing referee."
No Iranian media has mentioned Abbaszadeh's role in the Intelligence Protection Organization of the Joint Staff of the Armed Forces.
An insider at the Ministry of Sports and Youth reveals that Abbaszadeh is among the most significant figures in the intelligence and security sectors of Iran's sports.
"Some of Majid Abbaszadeh's international missions are carried out solely in coordination with the Overseas Council of the Ministry of Sports, bypassing the Boxing Federation," according to the source.
In June, Babak Bordbar, another Iranian international boxing referee, said that Abbaszadeh is currently not participating in international competitions due to his "limited proficiency in the English language" and "failure to pass the new tests on boxing refereeing regulations."
Nonetheless, there has been no disruption in his international travels. Sources told IranWire that he recently visited Poland and several other Central and Eastern European countries.
Majid Abbaszadeh is from the city of Qom and previously served as the head of the boxing team in that city.
For decades, the Islamic Republic has used sports as a facade for various political, security, economic and subversive activities abroad.