An Iranian gang who shared videos on social media of them beating up a rival gangster have been arrested by police.
The videos – which are circulated via popular messaging app, Telegram – show these local gangsters insulting each other, flexing their muscles, showing off their guns, and, in this one case, even beating up a rival.
These intimidation tactics have become increasingly popular among rival gangsters on Iran’s northern coast, but these clips are now starting to catch the attention of the authorities.
The clip above shows a well known local gangster from the town of Babo beating up a captive gangster from neighbouring Jouybar, attacking him at one point with a knife, France 24 reports.
After the video was widely shared on social media, police caught wind of it and swarmed the gangster’s homes on Monday and arrested eight of them. However, the one who filmed himself attacking his rival is still on the run.
The province’s police chief said through the gangs videos, the criminals had ‘inflicted fear upon the population’ and are now facing a charge which is usually applied to terrorists and other violent criminals: “war against God and the state”.
To publicly shame the gangsters, the police staged their own videos. First, filming their arrests and then paraded them around the town in police trucks in neighbourhoods where the men had committed their various crimes.
Under Iranian law, they could face anywhere from multiple years in prison up to the death penalty.