The head of a real estate agency in Iran has been arrested for the bizarre crime of transferring the title of an apartment to a dog. Police took the measure after a video went public which showed his company carrying out the peculiar business transaction. The widely circulated footage revealed that an Iranian couple handed over the title of their flat to their beloved canine named Chester.
The pair can be witnessed signing a document to formally assign ownership of their property to their furry, diminutive and white four-legged companion in the bizarre clip. His pawprint was used to seal the deal and it was accomplished with the aid of a woman using an ink pad. Thereafter, he is congratulated for acquiring possession of the residence.
رفتند یه آپارتمان به اسم سگشون آقا چستر زدن ، سگه پای قولنامه انگشتم زد 🤦♂️ pic.twitter.com/uSd30ZkCOe
— کتابشاه سوم (@ketabshah3) August 18, 2023
The strange decision was justified by the husband and wife as a result of the fact that they had no successors and wanted to give the flat to their cherished pet.
The Iranian authorities opened an investigation on 20 August in reaction to the viral video. The owner of the real estate firm involved in the sale was arrested and his business was briefly shut down. Reza Tabar, deputy prosecutor general, clarified that the deal was perceived as an effort to normalise morally repugnant and illegal acts.
The judiciary’s Mizan Online website stated, “The police arrested the head of the real estate agency and shuttered the firm on Saturday (19 August).” He was apprehended for “attacking moral values” because the animal is considered unclean in Iran. The accused has not been identified by the police.
Deputy prosecutor general Reza Tabar said that the decision to sell the apartment to Chester had no legal basis.
Iran does not have legislation that specifically forbids the ownership of dogs, but due to the influence of orthodox clerics, there is a generally negative cultural perception. They are viewed as filthy in multiple Muslim nations including Iran and hardline religious leaders sometimes advise against having them as pets.
A bill to limit pet ownership was submitted to the parliament in 2022. It would have outlawed the purchase, sale or maintenance of dogs, cats, and other animals as pets and require prospective owners to obtain government permission. The Tehran City Council further banned pets in public areas after government-affiliated media referred to dogs roaming the streets as a “major problem.”
A vet in Iran unveiled that the barring of pets started more than ten years ago. Dr Payam Moheb pointed out, “Iranian MPs tried to promote a law to confiscate all dogs and either give them to zoos or abandon them in deserts.”
Notwithstanding conventional beliefs, the country has seen an increase in pet ownership, notably among the upper and middle classes and with dogs and cats.