Texas man pleads guilty in 2012 so-called honor killing

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Nasim Irsan is taken away after pleading guilty to a murder charge for firing the shot that killed Gelareh Bagherzadeh, 30, on Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019, in Houston. Irsan has been sentenced to 40 years in prison for what prosecutors call the “honor killing” of an Iranian rights activist who was his sister’s friend. (Yi-Chin Lee/Houston Chronicle via AP)

HOUSTON (AP) — A Texas man has been sentenced to 40 years in prison for what prosecutors call the “honor killing” of an Iranian rights activist who was his sister’s friend.

Nasim Irsan pleaded guilty to murder Thursday in Houston. Irsan could have faced life in prison if convicted of capital murder for the January 2012 fatal shooting of Gelareh Bagherzadeh (GEL’-uh-ray buh-GAR’-zuh-day).

Prosecutors say Irsan’s family is Muslim and was angry that his sister wed a Christian and converted. Bagherzadeh encouraged her friend to marry Coty Beavers. He was slain in late 2012.

Irsan’s father, Jordanian immigrant Ali Mahwood-Awad Irsan, was convicted last year of capital murder in both shootings and sentenced to death.

Defense attorneys say 25-year-old Nasim Irsan was manipulated by his father.

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