United States District Court, District of Columbia
KETANJI BROWN JACKSON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
MEMORANDUM OPINION ADOPTING REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
OF MAGISTRATE JUDGE
MICHAEL HARVEY UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
18, 2016, Plaintiff Asfaneh Azadeh commenced this tort action
against Defendants the Government of the Islamic Republic of
Iran and the Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution
(collectively “Defendants”) for the
“uncontested and inhumane atrocities she suffered
during the three months she spent wrongfully imprisoned in an
Iranian jail.” Azadeh v. Gov't of Islamic
Republic of Iran, 16-cv-1467, 2018 WL 3381306, at *1
(D.D.C. July 11, 2018). Currently pending before this Court
is Azadeh's renewed motion for a default judgment against
Defendants and also Magistrate Judge Michael Harvey's
Report and Recommendation regarding that motion.
(See Pl.'s Renewed Mot. for Default J., ECF Nos.
13 & 40; Report and Recommendation (“R &
R”), ECF No. 27.) Because Azadeh has successfully
effected service upon Defendants in accordance with section
1608(a) of Title 28 of the United States Code, this Court now
has the personal jurisdiction and subject-matter jurisdiction
necessary to consider both the merits of Azadeh's claims
and the Magistrate Judge's recommendations. See
Azadeh, 2018 WL 3381306, at *1.
comprehensive Report and Recommendation, Magistrate Judge
Harvey evaluated the undisputed and harrowing facts that
Azadeh established, and he concluded that Defendants are
liable for assaulting, battering, falsely imprisoning, and
intentionally inflicting emotional distress upon Azadeh.
(See R & R at 33-38.) Magistrate Judge Harvey
also addressed the damages that should be awarded to Azadeh,
concluding that Plaintiff is entitled to the following: $13,
028, 889 for her pain and suffering; $5, 176, 733 for her
economic damages; and $18, 205, 622 for her punitive damages;
for a total damages award of $36, 411, 244. (Id. at
52; see also Id. at 38-52.) The Report and
Recommendation also advises the parties that, “failure
to file timely objections to the findings and recommendations
set forth in this report may waive [the parties'] right
of appeal from an order of the District Court that adopts
such findings and recommendations.” (Id. at
52-53); see Thomas v. Arn, 474 U.S. 140, 154 (1985);
see also Gov't of Rwanda v. Johnson, 409 F.3d
368, 376 (D.C. Cir. 2005) (“[O]bjections to magistrate
rulings are forfeited absent timely challenge in the district
considered these conclusions and the analysis supporting
them, this Court agrees with Magistrate Judge Harvey's
findings and ADOPTS his analysis and
conclusions regarding the Defendants' liability and the
appropriate amount of damages to be awarded to Azadeh.
Consequently, consistent with the attached Report and
Recommendation and as set forth in the accompanying Order,
Azadeh's renewed motion for a default judgment will be
GRANTED, and damages will be awarded in the
amount of $36, 411, 244.
matter was referred to the undersigned for full case
management. Plaintiff Afsaneh Azadeh brought this action
under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act's
(“FSIA”) state sponsor of terrorism exception. 28
U.S.C. § 1605A. She seeks to hold the Government of the
Islamic State of Iran and the Army of the Guardians of the
Islamic Revolution to account for the abuse and torment-and
as the undersigned finds below, torture-that she suffered
during nearly four months of detention at Iran's
notorious Evin Prison in 2012.
at Evin Prison, Plaintiff was locked in a small, windowless
cell, and subjected to daily interrogations seeking to elicit
a false confession that she was an agent for the U.S. Central
Intelligence Agency (“CIA”) engaging in
activities against Iran. Prison officials whipped her,
repeatedly hit her head against a wall, and pushed her down
stairs. They subjected her to two mock executions. They
drugged her and threatened to transfer to other prisons where
she would be raped, tortured and never seen again. They
detained her fiancé and told her that if she did not
confess that he would be subjected to the same treatment she
was experiencing. They also falsely told her that her mother
had died after hearing news that Plaintiff had been executed.
Not surprisingly, Plaintiff experienced substantial pain and
suffering while she was imprisoned. She experience panic
attacks, XXXXX , in a week-long
hunger strike, XXXXX . Since her
release, she continues to suffer the effects of her
incarceration, including permanent injuries to her shoulder
and head, XXXXX . In this action, she
seeks an award of compensatory and punitive damages against
Defendants for the physical and emotional injuries she has
neither Defendant filed a response to the complaint within 60
days of service as required by 28 U.S.C. § 1609(d),
Plaintiff has moved for entry of a default judgment. [Dkt.
10]. After a thorough review of the record evidence, and
consideration of this Court's case law adjudicating
analogous actions against foreign sovereigns, the undersigned
RECOMMENDS that Plaintiff's Motion for
Default Judgment be GRANTED, and that
Plaintiff be awarded $18, 205, 622 in compensatory damages,
and an equal amount of punitive damages, for a total of $36,
LEGAL STANDARD FOR ENTRY OF A DEFAULT JUDGMENT AGAINST A
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure grant district courts
discretion to enter a default judgment upon a party's
motion. Fed.R.Civ.P. 55(b)(2). A default judgment is normally
available, as here, when “the adversary process has
been halted because of an essentially unresponsive
party.” Jackson v. Beech, 636 F.2d 831, 836
(D.C. Cir. 1980) (internal quotation marks omitted). The
party seeking the judgment must demonstrate that the court
has both subject matter jurisdiction over the action and
personal jurisdiction over the absent defendant. See
Thuneibat v. Syrian Arab Republic, 167 F.Supp.3d 22, 33
(D.D.C. 2016); Mwani v. bin Laden, 417 F.3d 1, 6
(D.C. Cir. 2005). Additionally, before a default judgment can
be entered against a foreign sovereign, the FSIA requires a
plaintiff to “establish his claim or right to relief
by evidence satisfactory to the court.”
Thuneibat, 167 F.Supp.3d at 33 (quoting 28 U.S.C.
§ 1608(e)). A court must thoroughly review a
plaintiff's allegations and evidence against an absent
foreign sovereign. See Han Kim v. Democratic People's
Republic of Korea, 774 F.3d 1044, 1047 (D.C. Cir. 2014);
Bluth v. Islamic Republic of Iran, 203 F.Supp.3d 1,
16-17 (D.D.C. 2016). While a court “may not
unquestioningly accept a complaint's unsupported
allegations as true, ” Reed v. Islamic Republic of
Iran, F.Supp.2d 204, 211 (D.D.C. 2012),
“[u]ncontroverted factual allegations that are
supported by admissible evidence are taken as true.”
Thuneibat, 167 F.Supp.3d at 33; Roth v. Islamic
Republic of Iran, 78 F.Supp.3d 379, 386 (D.D.C. 2015).
An evidentiary hearing is not required; rather, a
“plaintiff may establish proof by affidavit.”
Reed, 845 F.Supp.2d at 212; see also Mwani,
417 F.3d at 7 (“In the absence of an evidentiary
hearing, although the plaintiffs retain ‘the burden of
proving personal jurisdiction, [they] can satisfy that burden
with a prima facie showing.' . . . [T]hey may
rest their argument on their pleadings, bolstered by such
affidavits and other written materials as they can otherwise
obtain.” (quoting Edmond v. U.S. Postal Serv. Gen.
Counsel, 949 F.2d 415, 424 (D.C. Cir. 1991))). The court
may also “take judicial notice of related proceedings
and records in cases before the same court.”
Ben-Rafael v. Islamic Republic of Iran, 540
F.Supp.2d 39, 43 (D.D.C. 2008).
filed suit against Defendants in July 2016 under the
FSIA's state sponsor of terrorism exception to foreign
sovereign immunity. See 28 U.S.C. § 1605A.
Plaintiff initially effected serviced on Defendants only
through diplomatic channels pursuant to section 1608(a)(4),
and not by first attempting service by mail pursuant to
section 1608(a)(3). [Dkt. 5-1]. Specifically, Plaintiff
provided translated copies of the summons, complaint and
notice of suit, to the Clerk of Court for delivery
by the U.S. Department of State to the Iranian Ministry of
Foreign Affairs. [Dkt. 5]. The State Department confirmed the
documents were delivered to the Iranian Ministry of Foreign
Affairs, via diplomatic channels, on January 17, 2017 under
diplomatic note. [Dkt. 8]. Neither Defendant filed a
response within 60 days of service as required by 28 U.S.C.
§ 1609(d). On March 23, 2017, at Plaintiffs request, the
Clerk of Court declared Defendants in default pursuant to
Fed.R.Civ.P. 55(a). [Dkt. 10; Dkt. 11].
April 23, 2018, citing to recent decisions from this Court
that have held that service on Iran many not be perfected
solely via diplomatic channels pursuant to section 1608(a)(4)
and have required service to be attempted via mail pursuant
to section 1608(a)(3), the undersigned ordered Plaintiff to
show cause as to why her motion for default judgment should
not be denied for failure of service on Defendants. [Dkt.
17]. In response. Plaintiff attempted service by mail on
Defendants pursuant to section 1608(a)(3). [Dkt. 21: Dkt.
22]. The Clerk of the Court mailed translated copies of the
summons, complaint, and notice of suit to the Iranian
Ministry of Foreign Affairs on May 8, 2018. [Dkt. 23]. The
Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs refused service on May
20, 2018. [Dkt. 25].
the undersigned now turns to Plaintiffs motion for a default
judgment pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1608(e). [Dkt. 13]. As
Plaintiffs briefing in support of her motion is
comprehensive, the undersigned finds that an evidentiaiy
hearing on the motion is unnecessary. See Reed,
F.Supp.2d at 212 (“[A] plaintiff may establish proof by
affidavit.”); Kilburn v. Islamic Republic of
Iran, 699 F.Supp.2d 136, 150 (D.D.C. 2010) (“In
assessing the plaintiffs' evidence, this court may
‘accept as true the plaintiff's uncontroverted
evidence.'” (quoting Elahi v. The Islamic
Republic of Iran, 124 F.Supp.2d 97, 100 (D.D.C. 2000))).
The undersigned's findings of fact and conclusions of law
in support of a default judgment against both Defendants
FINDINGS OF FACT
is a dual United States and Iranian citizen who was born in
Tehran, Iran in 1969. [Dkt. 12-2, ¶ 1]. She was raised
in Iran along with her five siblings. Id. She left
Iran at age twenty to attend university in Paris, where she
studied language and graphic design. Id. ¶ 3.
After obtaining her college degree in France, Plaintiff
immigrated to California in 1991, where she lived for the
next thirteen years. Id. She became a United States
citizen in October 2004. Id.
2005, Plaintiff accepted a position at HeavyLift
International (“HeavyLift”), an airplane cargo
transport company based in the United Arab Emirates
(“U.A.E.”). Id. ¶ 4. As a result,
Plaintiff was required to relocate to Dubai. Id.
Throughout her employment with HeavyLift, Plaintiff's
mother lived in Tehran and Plaintiff regularly traveled from
Dubai to Tehran to visit her. Id. ¶ 5. In 2010,
Plaintiff was promoted to HeavyLift's General Manager and
Accountable Manager. Id. ¶ 6.
Plaintiff's Abduction in Iran
2012, Plaintiff became engaged to a man she met in Tehran,
whom she visited whenever she traveled there. Id.
¶ 7. In May 2012, Plaintiff traveled to visit her
fiancé and to finalize wedding preparations.
Id. ¶ 8. Plaintiff arrived at Tehran's Imam
Khomeini International Airport on May 13, 2012. Id.
At the time of her arrival in Iran, XXXXX . Id. ¶ 7. She was kept at
the airport's passport control area for fifteen minutes
while an Iranian government official examined her documents,
but was ultimately permitted to continue to baggage claim.
Id. ¶ 9. After collecting her bags, Plaintiff
proceeded to the exit, but before she was able to leave, she
was surrounded by four men and one woman, all of whom were
later determined by Plaintiff to be officials of Defendant
Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution, also known
as the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (“the
Revolutionary Guard”). Id. ¶ 10. One of
the men presented Plaintiff with a document with her picture
on it. Id. She was not permitted to read the
document despite her request. Id. Plaintiff was told
the document was a warrant for her arrest based on
allegations that she “presented a danger to national
security.” Id. At that point, Plaintiff's
luggage and personal items were confiscated and she was
blindfolded, handcuffed, and placed inside a car.
Id. ¶ 11.
the drive, the officials demanded that Plaintiff give them
the passwords to her email and electronic devices.
Id. ¶ 14. When Plaintiff asked where she was being
taken, one of the officials told her that she was being
brought to Evin Prison. Id. ¶ 11. Plaintiff
became unable to catch her breath and-for the first time in
her life-began to experience a panic attack. Id.
Plaintiff's Detention in Evin Prison
a notoriously brutal prison located in northwestern Tehran.
[Dkt. 12-2, ¶ 13; Dkt. 13-5, ¶ 19]. According to
one of Plaintiff's experts, during interrogation sessions
at Evin, “interrogators routinely inflict various forms
of torture, physical abuse, and ill-treatment on the
detainee.” [Dkt. 13-5, ¶ 28]. The prison is
operated by the State Prison and Security and Corrective
Measures Organization which is under the authority of the
Iranian Judiciary. Id. ¶ 19. The Iranian
Judiciary is part of the Iranian government and answers to
the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei. Id.
Revolutionary Guard is a branch of Iran's armed forces
and is responsible for internal and border security. [Dkt.
12-1 at 11; Dkt. 13-5, ¶ 18]. There are certain wards of
Evin Prison which are under the autonomous control of the
Revolutionary Guard. [Dkt. 13-5, ¶¶ 18-19; Dkt.
12-2, ¶ 15]. Upon arriving at the prison, Plaintiff was
taken to one of the cells in a section of the prison under
the control of the Revolutionary Guard. [Dkt. 12-2, ¶
15]. Plaintiff's cell was small and windowless. It was
approximately 6 feet by 9 feet with high concrete walls, no
electricity, and lit only through two small slits in the iron
door of her cell. Id. The cell had a squat toilet in
the floor and an old, dirty carpet. Id. Upon seeing
her cell, Plaintiff began to have trouble breathing and
experienced another panic attack. Id. ¶ 16. At
that moment, she “thought [she] was going to
several hours, her repeated entreaties for help eventually
prompted a prison guard to take her to an infirmary, where
she was given a so-called “truth pill.”
Id. The doctor told her that the pills would relax
her and force her to tell the truth. Id. Plaintiff would
be forced to take the “truth pills” three times a
day for the remainder of her detention. Id.
her arrival at Evin Prison, Plaintiff was forced to change
into pink prison pajamas, an old white t-shirt, a long coat,
and a chador to cover her hair and face. Id. ¶
17. Having been forced to wear a chador, Plaintiff became
concerned as to how the guards would react to her red acrylic
nails. Id. XXXXX
next morning, she was taken to the courthouse of Evin Prison
and presented before a prosecutor for the Iranian government,
who told her that she had been accused of working for the CIA
and of helping an Iranian anti-government movement known as
the Green Revolution. Id. ¶ 18. The prosecutor
told Plaintiff that the punishment for spying was execution
and that, “we have zero tolerance for people like you
who are working for the Great Satan.” Id.
Plaintiff signed a paper acknowledging the charges against
her, even though she continued to assert her innocence.
Id. ¶ 19.
second day of Plaintiff's detention, two interrogators
took her to a room located underneath the prison, where she
was questioned for nine hours. Id. ¶ 20. Once
in the room, the interrogators again accused her of being a
spy, stating “[w]e have enough documents to keep you
here 10 years. And if we prove you are a spy, we will execute
you.” Id. The interrogators were angry and
aggressive, which caused Plaintiff to have another panic
attack, after which one of the interrogators gave her a
ten-minute break and some pills before continuing her
interrogator asked her questions about her employment with
HeavyLift, specifically about the company's contracts
with the U.S. Department of Defense to provide food supplies
to U.S. troops in Afghanistan and Iraq. Id. ¶
21. At the time, the company had various contracts with the
U.S. government, including ones with the U.S. Department of
Defense to support U.S. troops. Id. The interrogator
asked her about the kind of assistance her employer provided
the United States. She told the interrogator that HeavyLift
delivered only food supplies, but the interrogator insisted
that she was a CIA agent providing some other kind of
assistance on behalf of the United States. Id. It
was clear to Plaintiff that they were detaining and
questioning her because she worked for a company that had
dealings with the U.S. government. The interrogators
repeatedly demanded that she confess to things she had not
done, including demanding that she identify the names and
photos of various people whom she did not know. Id.
the first week of Plaintiff's detention, the guards took
her to another small, window-less cell in the prison.
Id. ¶ 23. This second cell was the same size as
her previous cell-6 feet by 9 feet-but it contained neither a
bed nor a toilet. Id. Plaintiff slept on an
insect-infested rug on the floor; insect bites frequently
prevented her from being able to sleep at night and left
welts on her body. Id. The cell also contained a
bright blue light that was lit twenty-four hours a day,
making it difficult for her to sleep. Id. Plaintiff
remained in this cell for the remainder of her detention.
was interrogated every day for the next six weeks of her
detention, often for periods of twelve hours or more.
Id. ¶ 24. These interrogations would begin with
a prison guard blindfolding and handcuffing Plaintiff and
chaining her feet, after which the guard would force her to
walk to the interrogation room. Id. Her captors
regularly woke her in the middle of the night and took her to
the interrogation room to ask her the same set of questions
an interrogation that occurred during Plaintiff's first
week of detention, the guards placed her in a chair that
faced a wall. Id. ¶ 25. When the interrogator
was displeased with an answer she provided, the interrogator
would kick the chair, causing her face and body to strike the
concrete wall in front of her. Id. During this
interrogation session, Plaintiff was kicked into the wall
five or six times, bloodying her face and knees and resulting
in severe headaches, dizziness, blurred vision, and nausea.
one week later, Plaintiff was walking slowly down a flight of
stairs because of sciatic nerve pain from her beating the
week before. Id. ¶ 26. Annoyed, a prison guard
pushed Plaintiff, handcuffed and blindfolded, down a flight
of stairs. Id. Because she was handcuffed, she could
not break her fall, and her head slammed into the concrete
stairs and wall and her right shoulder became dislocated.
Id. Plaintiff became dizzy, experienced a headache,
and was unable to stand. Id. Eventually she was
taken to the infirmary and given some pain medication, but
she was not treated for the underlying injuries to her head
or shoulder. Id.
another occasion, Plaintiff was brought to an interrogation
room and forced to stand against a wall. Id. ¶
31. A man came into the room with a long whip. Id.
When Plaintiff's knees began to hurt during the
interrogation from standing and she tried to sit down, the
man would whip her legs to prevent her from doing so.
Id. He told her that he enjoyed seeing her suffer.
Id. The interrogators also made comments about
Plaintiff's body and attire, having found a photo of her
in a bathing suit. Id. They told Plaintiff that
women who wear bathing suits were worthy of being raped.
Id. She was whipped twice more during the
interrogation session for merely looking at the man who was
whipping her. Id. The beatings resulted in large
bruises all over her body. Id.
another occasion, shortly after eating her evening meal,
Plaintiff's body became covered in a rash and she began
coughing uncontrollably. Id. ¶ 32. Realizing
she was having a life-threatening reaction to something she
had eaten, she pleaded for help and banged on the cell door,
but the prison guards ignored her. Id. Only after
other prisoners began to bang on their cell doors did a
prison guard come to Plaintiff's cell, by which point her
breathing was labored. Id. She was taken to the
infirmary, where a doctor scolded the guard for endangering
Plaintiff's life. Id. The next day, her
interrogator told her that Evin Prison “was not a good
place to die” and that she “could avoid further
harm” by giving the interrogators what they wanted.
Id. For this reason, Plaintiff believes she was
intentionally poisoned by prison officials. Id.
the third week of Plaintiff's detention, she was
subjected to a mock execution. A prison guard came to her
cell around midnight, blindfolded her, and told her,
“[w]e are not getting anywhere with you. We will deal
with you differently now.” Id. ¶ 33. She
was taken to a car and driven outside the prison, where she
was forced to stand up against a wall. Id. At that
moment, one of her interrogators told her the government had
no tolerance for “spies” like her, that she was
an embarrassment as an Iranian and Muslim woman, and that she
had been sentenced to die. Id. The interrogator
said, “I told you to cooperate. Do you have anything to
say?” Id. ¶ 34. Plaintiff was terrified
and could not stop crying. She then heard men recite verses
from the Qur'an that are typically recited to the dying.
Id. She heard instructions being given to a firing
squad to fire, after which she heard several gun shots.
Id. The last thought she had was: “I am going
to die and no one will know.” Id. Her life
flashing before her eyes, she lost consciousness and
remained at the hospital for several days. Id.
¶ 36. Her captors did not allow her to have any
visitors, and the hospital staff was forbidden to speak with
her. Id. The interrogator who had declared her death
sentence again threatened her, saying “[w]e gave you
another chance to live; this is your last chance. Think it
through and cooperate with us. If you don't, next time
you are going to die.” Id.
the tenth week of Plaintiff's detention, she was
subjected to a second mock execution. Id. ¶ 44.
A woman came to Plaintiff's cell late at night to teach
her how to pray and to recite verses from the Qur'an.
Id. The woman told Plaintiff that she only had a few
hours left before the guards would come take her away, and
that she should pray for forgiveness. Id.
Eventually, the guards arrived, blindfolded her, forced her
into a car, and drove her to a location where she was made to
stand up against a wall. Id. ¶ 45. Plaintiff
was told by her interrogator that she would be killed if she
did not confess. Id. She became frozen with grief
and fear. Plaintiff heard verses being recited from the
Qur'an, followed by several gun shots. Id.
Plaintiff again lost consciousness, and woke up in the
her detention, Plaintiff's captors also repeatedly
subjected her to psychological abuse. Nearly every night for
one month, she was forced by her interrogators to write out
her life story. Id. ¶ 39. She produced lengthy
written documents, only to have her interrogators tear up the
statement and order her to start again. Id. At one
point, an interrogator accused her of wasting his time and
threatened to take her to the women's public jail or to a
prison on the border of Iran and Afghanistan. Id. He
told her that the female prisoners who are imprisoned there
do not come back. Id. He said she would be raped,
tortured, and never be seen again. Id.
another interrogation, an interrogator informed Plaintiff
that her fiancé had been arrested, was being held at
the prison, and that he had told them
“everything.” Id. ¶ 27. Plaintiff
was told that if she did not do the same, her fiancé
would be subjected to the same treatment she was
experiencing. Id. Plaintiff was heartbroken and
feared for her fiancé's safety-it tormented her
knowing he was being punished just for knowing her.
Id. The guards then took Plaintiff past a room where
officials were, in fact, holding her fiancé.
Id. ¶ 28. She shouted, asking the guards why
they had brought him to Evin Prison, at which point her
fiancé saw her, and he too began shouting.
Id. Plaintiff overheard the guards tell her
fiancé that she would be stoned to death unless he
officials also tormented Plaintiff by promising her the
opportunity to contact her family, only to renege at the last
minute. Id. ¶ 29. For example, on one occasion
a guard blindfolded her and took her to an area of the prison
where she could hear prisoners talking to their families, and
she could tell that she was in line to use the only telephone
available to inmates. Id. When it was her turn, the
guard pushed her forward, but as soon as she picked up the
handset, she heard her interrogator on the other end of the
telephone screaming that personal calls had not been
authorized for her and that she should be returned to her
cell. Id. She was never permitted to speak to her
family. Id. ¶ 30.
officials also falsely told Plaintiff that her mother had
died upon hearing news that Plaintiff had been executed.
Id. ¶ 37. Plaintiff states that, in this
moment, she “lost all hope. [She] was sure God had
forgotten [her], perhaps for something [she] had done. . .
[She] lost all will to live.” Id.
had been collecting the “truth pills” the guards
had been giving her. Id. ¶ 42. While initially
the guards stood over her to ensure she took the pills, as
time went on they simply handed them to her and walked away.
Id. Plaintiff began hiding the pills under the
carpet of her cell. Id. XXXXX
Plaintiff's twelfth week of incarceration, the guards
told her that they would release her, but only on the
condition that Plaintiff's family paid collateral to
ensure she did not leave the country. Id. ¶ 46.
A family friend then agreed to sign over the deed to her
house to secure Plaintiff's release. Id. Even
then, she remained detained. Id. To protest her
continued detention, Plaintiff staged a hunger strike.
Id. She lasted a week before prison officials took
her to the infirmary and began an intravenous drip of sugar
Plaintiff's Release from Evin Prison
September 2, 2012, Plaintiff's interrogators dictated a
confession, which Plaintiff wrote and signed because she
“could no longer tolerate the torture of being held in
Evin Prison.” Id. ¶ 47. In it, Plaintiff
falsely confessed to being a CIA agent and to engaging in
activities against Iran. Id. Afterwards, Plaintiff
was returned her clothes and taken back to the infirmary
where she was examined and weighed by a doctor. Id.
¶ 48. During her four months in Evin Prison, she had
lost twenty-five pounds. Id.
was then blindfolded and driven to a location where her
mother and brother were waiting for her. Id. ¶
49. She could not stop crying when she saw them. Id.
As a condition of her release, she was placed under house
arrest for two months until her next court date. Id.
¶ 50. Officials told her that they had sufficient
evidence to send Plaintiff to prison for 12 years.
spent the days after her release secluded in a room in her
mother's home. Id. ¶ 51; [Dkt. 12-3,
¶¶ 21-22]. While she wanted to reconnect with
people, she was physically and emotionally incapable of doing
so. Voices were terrifying to her, as were lights, noises,