Through this principle, the mullahs and the Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) have created institutions with the sole purpose of increasing reactionary views into the regime’s support structure.

This scheme has been pursued by the same people for 40 years, people who have changed political and economic systems to suit their own interests. Some of these are members of the “Kerman Circle”, which is part of the IRGC’s mafia system run by the Republic of Sultans.

Yadollah Movahed, judiciary head for Kerman Province, announced a 13 trillion-toman corruption case in January 2014 and revealed a scheme whereby banks or funds would ask Tejarat Bank in Kerman to deposit money through an interbank check that would be returned several days later, which led to out of stock bank guarantees.

Initially, this was a major story, but like other corruption scandals, it was soon sidelined. However, it did lead to the arrest of Tejarat Bank’s Executive Deputy Manager Ali Akbar Emarat Saz.

To prosecute Emarat Saz, 51, the judiciary set up a new process and a new institution, the “Special Court for Investigating the Crimes of Corrupters and Economic Disruptors”.

After five years, his case was complete and they found that he had been ignoring rules and regulations to fraudulently issue bank checks in favor of the Gharz al-Hasna Resalat Fund, Gharz al-Hasna Tawhid Fund, Mahan Airlines, and more.

But this raised several questions:

  • Why was the IRGC Legal Department investigating this case?
  • How is corruption by a Kerman bank manager linked to the IRGC?
  • Why did Emarat Saz issue a surety bond guarantee for Mahan Air?
  • What was Mahan Air’s involvement?

The Iranian Resistance said: “The case showed that Mahan Airlines and the IRGC were both trying to exploit huge budgets and revenue sources from domestic banks. Through embezzlement, money laundering, acquisition of people’s property, and the creation of cover institutions and banks, Mahan and the IRGC no doubt sought to expand the activities that had brought the airline under US sanctions. It has long been identified as a partner to the IRGC in smuggling operations that also involve a number of militant Iranian proxies in the surrounding region.”

Emarat Saz was sentenced to 25 years in prison, but none of the institutions involved faced adequate consequences, which should show the endemic corruption at the head of the regime.


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Strategic Corruption in Iran’s Government