Son charged with murder in connection with honor killing pleads guilty

HOUSTON – It has been just over a year since Ali Irsan, a father accused of committing honor killings, was found guilty of murder and sentenced to death for the murders of his son-in-law, Coty Beavers, and Gelareh Bagherzadeh.

Irsan's son, Nasim Irsan, who was charged in connection with Bagherzadeh's death, went before a judge Thursday to enter his plea.

Bagherzadeh was a friend of Ali Irsan's daughter, Nesreen Irsan.

What's new:

Nasim Irsan's capital murder charge was dismissed in exchange for pleading guilty and serving 40 years in prison.

"The evidence would have been different. There were witnesses who would cooperate in Ali Irsan's trial that would not have been able to testify or would not testify per their agreements in this trial," said Jon Stephenson, assistant Harris County district attorney.

"Based on our evaluation of the evidence and everything that happened," said Stephenson, "taking into consideration the evidence, the views of the family, this is what we thought was appropriate."

Irsan has already served five years of that time. "We think it's the right outcome under the circumstances," said Anthony Osso, Irsan's attorney.

What Happened:

Nasim Irsan, his father, Ali Irsan, his mother and one of his sisters were all charged in connection with the 2012 death of Bagherzadeh.

Bagherzadeh helped Nesreen Irsan leave the Muslim faith and introduced her to Beavers, the man she eventually married.

According to Stephenson, this was a dishonor and for the father, killing the people Nesreen Irsan loved was the only "way to regain that honor and redeem that shame."

Stephenson said Nasim Irsan and his family all played roles in Bagherzadeh's death.

"I think it was apparent from the beginning, and they spent weeks trying Ali Irsan's case. It was apparent then that he was a master manipulator. This was a case of some serious overreaching, parental overreaching off the charts,"said Osso.

"They had decided that tonight was the night, and Ali armed Nasim with a gun, and they left," Stephenson said. "They followed (Bagherzadeh) to her home on Augusta, which is in the Galleria area. They follow her into a parking lot, and they see her sitting there talking on the phone. Ali Irsan approaches the car on one side, and Nasim Irsan approaches the car on the other side while (the mother) waits in the car for them. Nasim Irsan shoots (Bagherzadeh) in the head and executes her as she sits in the car."

Ali Irsan's wife, who was also charged in connection withBagherzadeh's death, had testified that her husband planned to kill three others -- Beavers' mother, Beavers' twin brother and his own daughter, Nesreen Irsan -- before his arrest.

Nasim Irsan's other sister, Nadia Irsan, was charged with stalking in connection with the killings.

Ali Irsan was found guilty of both deaths and sentenced to death in 2018.

About the Authors: