The Press Law

Chapter 7: Press Jury

Article 36: Election of the jury will be as followed: It will be held once every two years, in the month of Mehr, for the purpose of selecting the members of the jury in Tehran, by invitation of the minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance and in his presence and the head of the Justice office of the province, head of the city council, head of the propaganda office and the representative of the policy making office of the Friday Prayer Imam’s of the Country, and in the capitals of the states by invitation of the manager of the office of Culture and Islamic Guidance of the province and by his presence and the presence of the head of the justice office of the province, head of the city council of the capital city of the province, head of the propaganda organization and the Friday prayer imam of the capital of the province of his representative. 21 people in Tehran and 14 people in other cities will be elected as members of the aforementioned Board from people trusted by the masses from amongst various groups in the society (clergies, university professors, physicians, engineers, writers, journalists, lawyers, teachers and instructors, members of trade guilds, employees, laborer, farmers, artists, and members of the basij)
Note 1: If the topics of this article are not done within the assigned time, the head of the Office of Justice is responsible to invite the aforementioned people and elect a jury.
Note 2: If for any reason the number of the jury members is reduced to 10 people or less, the board mentioned in this article is responsible to meet within a month and complete the jury members again.

Article 37: Members of the jury must possess the following conditions:
1. Being of at least 30 years of age and being married
2. Not having any effective criminal record
3. Be known for trustworthiness, honesty, and have good name.
4. Scientific competence and knowledge of cultural and press issues.

Article 38: After selecting the members of the jury, topic of article 36 of this law, issues will be handed over to the members by the head of the justice office of the province. The court investigating a press crime will invite the jury to participate in the trial at least a week in advance. The court will convene with the presence of at least seven jury members. The vote of the majority will be the method of decisions making for the jury; members are obliged to stay in the court until the trial adjourns.
Note 1: the decisions of the Supervisory Board and the jury are only valid if it is achieved through absolute maximum votes of those present.
Note 2: If for two court sessions of a press crime the jury does not meet the minimum requirement in number, in the third session the court will investigate the matter with those present if they are up to five people.
Note 3: The office of the jury will be established with the budget and equipments of the Judiciary and under the supervision of the jury.

Article 39: If any member of the jury misses two sessions in a row or five consecutive court sessions without a valid excuse or refuses to participate in decision making he / she will be banned from participating as a jury member for two years by order of the investigating court. The court decision is final.
Note: if any of the jury members is not able to attend a court session due to a valid reason, he / she must report his / her reason to the court two days before the court session. If not, his / her excuse is considered invalid, unless the excuse occurred within that period of time which he / she still must report to the court anyway. Valid excuses are those explained in the Code of Proceedings.

Article 40: Upon their first appearance in court, the jury members will swear to god on the Holy Koran to fulfill their duty without allowing influence of any personal or group adherence and with honesty, piety, trust, and toward proving the rights and exposing the false.

Article 41: Issues of rejecting a jury member are those that, by law, apply to rejecting judges.

Article 42: If during the court proceedings, the jury members have questions, they will submit them in writing to the head of the court.

Article 43: Once it is announced that the proceeding have come to an end, the jury will immediately enter deliberation and will give its opinion, in writing, regarding the following to court:
a. Is the accused a misdemeanant or not?
b. If so, is he / she deserving of a [punishment] decrease?

Article 44: If the court decision is for acquittal or sentencing that does not entail loss of social rights, the publication’s printing halt, if it was enforced, will be removed immediately and its republication will not be barred.

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