Hoarding coronavirus supplies punishable by death in Iran: Attorney General

An Iranian man wears a protective mask to prevent contracting coronavirus, in Tehran, Iran. (Reuters)

Those found guilty of hoarding coronavirus-related supplies in Iran could face the death penalty, Iran’s Attorney General Mohammad Jafar Montazeri said on Sunday, as the country continues to grapple with the outbreak of the deadly virus.

The nationwide coronavirus death toll in Iran is 66, and the number of confirmed cases 1,501 as of Monday, according to the health ministry.

Only 1 million out of 200 million face masks ordered by Iran’s health ministry were delivered to the ministry, Health Minister Saeed Namaki said in a letter to President Hassan Rouhani on Sunday.

The rest of the face masks are being sold on the black market, said Namaki, adding that the health ministry has had to purchase face masks from the black market at exorbitant prices.

Read more: Watch: Clinic in Iran torched, believed to be coronavirus quarantine

A few weeks ago, Namaki announced that Iran sent 2 million masks to China.

Attorney-General Montazeri urged Namaki in a letter on Sunday to report any cases of coronavirus-related hoarding, saying “Disrupting the public health system is not only viewed as a crime but also faces a punishment on par with spreading corruption on earth.”

“Spreading corruption on earth” is a crime punishable by death under the laws of the Islamic Republic.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 10:05 - GMT 07:05
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