IRAN QUASHES EXECUTION VERDICT FOR FOOTBALL CASE WOMAN
February 13, 2008: Iran quashed the conviction of a woman sentenced to death for murdering a former football star's wife in a case that sparked a major scandal, a newspaper reported. Judiciary chief Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi overturned the execution verdict against Shahla Jahed and ordered a fresh probe into the case after finding flaws in the original investigation, the Etemad newspaper said.
Jahed had faced hanging for the premeditated stabbing of Laleh Saharkhizan, the wife of former national football team player and top coach Nasser Mohammad Khani in June 2002. Her sentence was confirmed by the Supreme Court in October 2005.
Khani had taken Jahed as a temporary wife, under a custom unique to Shia Islam and Jahed was accused of killing Khani's other wife in a crime of passion.
Jahed initially pleaded guilty after an 11-month silence in custody but then maintained her innocence, saying she had confessed to murder "only out of love for Nasser." (Sources: Agence France Presse, 13/02/2008)