Saeed Dezfouli

Saeed's powder case ends


Saeed Dezfouli was accused of sending 17 envelopes containing a letter and white powder to politicians, authorities and media organisations including the Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Channel 7 and SBS on January 26, 2019. This was a protest for being held indefinitely, and treated unfairly by Justice Health.


                                                                          Saeed supported by his brother Masoud and Brett

The case came before the District Court on the issue of his fitness to plead in the trial last week 27th and 28th February and March 2nd. Saeed was allowed to represent himself in court and had called a number of witnesses in his defence, including psychiatrists from the Forensic Hospital and his primary carer Brett Collins, to show that he was fit to plead and the alleged action was a reasonable protest against the unfairness of his situation.

Saeed then withdrew from presenting his case and refused to attend as he had been excluded from an earlier hearing and because the nurses’ statements against him had had the names removed, thereby making it impossible for him to challenge their information. The District Court then ordered that a lawyer should be forced upon him as the Act required him to be represented.

The Commonwealth prosecutor quoted as the precedent for that being correct practice, amazingly, Saeed’s actual case in 2007 when Saeed had the same thing happen. In Saeed’s original case the lawyer refused to accept Saeed’s instructions that he was guilty of lighting a fire, but instead lodged a not guilty due to mental illness plea, over Saeed’s protests. The result was that Saeed is now held indefinitely, so far 18 years, rather than being penalised with a 3.5 year sentence for lighting the fire. Now the lawyers wanted to do it again! He would be insane to want a lawyer! The NSW Law Reform Commission said that this approach was unfair and should be changed. See Report 138. p. 179-180.

The matter resumed on Monday 2nd of March, with three short hearings. A warrant was waiting for Saeed’s arrest to have him dragged before the court as he had refused to leave the hospital to attend. At the afternoon hearing the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions barrister announced that it had withdrawn its prosecution, and would not proceed further. They referred to increased security at the hospital to prevent any reoccurrence.

Saeed thanked his supporters for their assistance. He said that he will use his remaining time at the Forensic Hospital positively, furthering his education as a translator to keep busy and prepare for release. He has been given access to a computer and limited use of the internet to whitelisted websites for research. Justice Action discussed with management how that could be extended.

Saeed's index page


Media Release: Saeed is refused computer and law access

Media release Wednesday May 16, 2018
As with Saeed Dezfouli, the callous disrespect exposed in Lismore Hospital to dying Miriam Merten will continue. Nothing in Health’s Implementation Plan will change the culture. There will be no ongoing objective accountability, no removal of legislative protections such as s.195 MH Act, no computers and phones in seclusion areas, no alternatives to forced treatment, and no independent consumer advocacy. The timetable shows no urgency for consumers getting on Committees and no structure for electing representatives. The endemic corruption of mental health, with noses in the NSW Health Department’s annual trough of $23 billion is disgraceful to all those who don’t demand structural changes after such an exposure.

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Iranian Embassy Concerned About Saeed

Iranian Embassy expresses concerns to Minister Dutton and Premier Berejiklian about Saeed's life, safety and future in Australia.

See letter from Consulate Section of the Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran to Hon Peter Dutton MP (Minister for Home Affairs) and The Hon Gladys Berejiklian (Premier of New South Wales).




Iran tells Mental Tribunal: "Unfair"

Mr Saeed Dezfouli is a dual Iranian and Australian citizen who has been indefinitely detained in the clogged and inhuman mental health system of NSW since January 2002. He is protesting against being physically and mentally tortured, sexually harassed and assaulted by NSW prison officers and staff of Justice Health. In response, he renounced his Australian citizenship in August 2017 to repatriate to Iran, despite coming to Australia as a refugee in 1983.

Mr Dezfouli’s treating psychiatrist Dr. Sathish Dayalan and the President of the NSW Mental Health Review Tribunal Mr Richard Cogswell have set requirements in order to issue the repatriation order of Mr Dezfouli to Iran. The government of the Islamic Republic of Iran is to apprehend Mr Dezfouli on arrival in Iran and confine him to a secure mental health facility until released by due process of the law in Iran.

The Iranian embassy, in a letter to Richard Cogswell, has found this recommendation of the Mental Health Tribunal to be unlawful, unfair and concerning for the Iranian government to do this to its own citizen. Now, Mr Dezfouli remains indefinitely within the maximum security mental health system of NSW.

In his letter to Richard Cogswell, Mr Dezfouli has stated that, if by 1200 hours on the 7th of March, his unconditional repatriation order is not issued by the Tribunal, he will commence a dry hunger strike (nil by mouth) and refuse all of his cardiac medication, which will result in his death. Mr Dezfouli is asking for the support of all the kind people in NSW to contact the President of the NSW Mental Health Review Tribunal Mr Richard Cogswell and express their support and concern for him. We support his desperate plea for help.

Comments: Brett Collins 0438 705 003


Iranian Embassy Statements and Other Correspondence

Tribunal supports repatriation 28 April 1016

Below is the formal response submitted to the Mental Health Review Tribunal
The JA media release is here.

Formal Primary Carer/Justice Action Proposals and Response to Justice Health Report
Submitted to Saeed Dezfouli Mental Health Review Tribunal Hearing, 28 April 2016

The Justice Health’s Report is clearly and demonstrably unfair. It has a negative slant toward all of Mr. Dezfouli’s behaviour, even when other interpretations of his behaviour are equally viable. This negative bias undermines the value judgments the Hospital makes where their expertise and discretions are officially adopted. Justice Health was required to provide Mr. Dezfouli with this Report two weeks before the Hearing. We would like to draw attention to the Tribunal that the Report was a week late and disadvantaged Saeed.

The former Mental Tribunal President Professor Dan Howard previously expressed his disappointment in the Health Department’s failure to implement Tribunal recommendations for Saeed, stating that “sometimes the system needs a kicking.” Nevertheless, despite the Tribunal’s recommendations, the Report has dismissed Mr. Dezfouli’s lack of access to a consumer worker and a stand-alone computer as insignificant. This conduct by Justice Health is further evidence of an unfair and corrupt system, which misleads the people it is supposed to protect as well as the Tribunal itself.

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22nd July 2015: New Attacks: Saeed renounces citizenship

New attacks: Saeed renounces citizenship

"Saeed Dezfouli who featured in the ABC program ‘The man without a name’ has been attacked again by the hospital. They have just doubled his forced medication, threatened me personally with their Emergency Response Team and to exclude me as his primary carer. The hospital needs to crush him as he challenges their disrespect for his rights and exposes the system’s lack of accountability" said Justice Action Coordinator Brett Collins.

I will renounce my Australian citizenship and return to the chaos of Iran to escape the torture at the hands of these doctors. The Iranian Consul-General just visited me for the purpose.  I am still shocked at the culture of abuse in Australia's so-called health care. I feel sick in my stomach waiting for their poison to hit my brain" said Saeed Dezfouli.  

"Over the last thirteen and a half years Saeed’s forced medication has been changed nine times.   On the 24th of June 2015, Saeed was injected with double the dose of Paliperidone on the order of psychiatrist Barbara Sinclair. On December 8th last year they injected him with Clopixol after he refused to meet with them. He had told them and the Mental Tribunal it was the drug he most feared. Have they no mercy or empathy?” asked Mr Collins.

"These attacks against Saeed are now being made against his support as well. Statewide Clinical Director Dr Tobias Mackinnon claimed that I had acted in a threatening manner by stamping my foot and pointing my finger, and that the ‘duress buttons’ were nearly pushed during a meeting. We had insisted that the Tribunal’s April 2014 recommended consumer worker support and computer access be given - still treated with contempt. The Emergency Response Team of ten nurses would have come in on me. He also threatened to remove our access to Saeed. Now the truth of their lies and brutality is seen. This correspondence is now exposed on our website” said Mr Collins. 

"Saeed is now preparing for his 4th Supreme Court appeal with a barrister currently being briefed. The Mental Health Review Tribunal is too weak to control the hospital, admitting that it has made no orders since 2009, despite Justice Lindsay’s decision that it was in a supervisory position over a patient’s detention, care and treatment. This job of ensuring mental health system accountability should not be left to an Iranian refugee” said Mr Collins.

Comments: Brett Collins 0438 705003

4th September 2014: MHRT Hearing

On 4 September 2014 the Mental Health Review Tribunal (MHRT) convened for Saeed Dezfouli. The hearing followed a series of meetings with the hospital that were held to address why key recommendations from the last MHRT hearing had not been implemented. Justice Health’s conduct during those negotiations demonstrated an absolute unwillingness to be held accountable for their actions and a cavalier approach to the implementation of MHRT recommendations. The Lindsay judgment giving power to the Tribunal had been ignored by the hospital. Here is our Media Release.

This report details the exchanges between Saeed, his primary carer and Justice Action Coordinator, Brett Collins, his treating team from Justice Health in the period between the publication of the MHRT decision on 2 May 2014 through to the most recent hearing on 4 September 2014. The first section of this report provides a background to the recent series of meetings and hearings, including an outline of media interest in Saeed and details of the meetings that occurred. Section 2 discusses the problems with with the MHRT report handed down on 26 August 2014. The third and final section details the issues with the subsequent Hearing on 4 September 2014.

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16th July 2015: Hospital doubles dosage and attacks Carer

Saeed Dezfouli who featured in the ABC program ‘The man without a name’ has been subjected to a series of new attacks against his personal support and bodily integrity.

On the 24th of June 2015, Saeed was injected with double the dose of Paliperidone on the order of psychiatrist Barbara Sinclair. On December 8th last year they injected him with Clopixol after he refused to meet with them. He had told them it was the drug he most feared said Mr. Collins.

Over the last thirteen and a half years, Saeed’s forced medication has been changed nine times. These attacks against Saeed are now being made against his supporters as well.

In a letter dated 28th May 2015, Clinical Director, Dr. Tobias Mackinnon claimed that Saeed’s Primary Carer, Brett Collins acted in a threatening manner and that the ‘duress buttons’ were nearly pushed during a meeting. This would have resulted in a team of ten nurses to be despatched to deal with a potentially violent threat. Dr. Mackinnon threatened to bring the Primary Carer relationship under review, and to exclude our access to Saeed and the forensic hospital said Mr. Collins.

This is an outrageous intimidation. Here is my response and what Dr. Mackinnon and the psychiatrist, Barbara Sinclair said. 

Saeed is now preparing for his 4th Supreme Court appeal with a barrister currently being briefed. The Mental Health Review Tribunal refuses to control the hospital not having given any orders since 2009.  It is clear that the Mental Health Review Tribunal’s refusal to make orders in the best interests of Saeed’s care and treatment suggests a failure to abide by their statutory obligations and an inability to act for the benefit of forensic patients.

I will renounce my Australian citizenship and return to the chaos of Iran in order to escape the torturous hands of these doctors. I met with the Consul-General this week. Feel sick in the stomach waiting for their poison to hit. It is such an abuse, and I need help from outside” (Saeed Dezfouli, 24th June 2015)

Justice Action will steadfastly support Saeed’s right to bodily integrity without interference, and pressure the Forensic Hospital to provide Saeed with consumer worker support and access to a computer – which it continues to neglect more than a year after the Tribunal made those recommendations on March 2014.

Professor Dan Howard, President of the Tribunal said in frustration that sometimes the system needs a kicking. Six months later when nothing had happened.


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