Authorities in Iran have arrested a dozen men and women working in the fashion industry for “spreading prostitution,” according to online reports.
A court in Shiraz has handed sentences of five months to six years to eight women and four men, attorney Mahmoud Taravat told Ilna news.
He added that his clients, who he did not mention by name, are now prohibited from working in fashion or for leaving the country for two years following their apprehension, Taravat said.
The Iranian regime often cracks down on Western influences on music, poetry, political dissidence and any type of pop-culture, arguing that it corrupts individuals and goes against the teachings of Islam.
The 12 deny the allegations and are planning to appeal the charges.
Earlier this year, The Foreign Desk reported on seven fashion models who were arrested for sharing photos without Islamic headscarves to their Instagram accounts.
While Iran’s government enforces strict Islamic law, many Iranian people, particularly among the country’s overwhelming youth population seek out Western culture, including fashion, beauty and technology.