Since 2017, Sahar Tabar gained Instagram followers by posting highly altered pictures of herself, which she claims resemble actress Angelina Jolie. Tabar's Instagram profile has been deleted after she was arrested by the Iranian police. Judicial authorities have arrested Tabar on multiple charges including blasphemy.
The charge of blasphemy can end up sending Tabar to prison for five years or worse. Back in 2014, a man had been executed for heresy. Iranian law still allows execution for charges of blasphemy.
In addition to charges of blasphemy Tabar has been accused of instigating violence, inciting young people to commit corruption, illegally acquiring property and violating the country's dress code. Iranian women must cover their heads in public. However, in her pictures, Tabar is often seen with her head uncovered.
When she shot to fame, Tabar had claimed that she underwent 50 surgeries to change her look to resemble Angelina Jolie. However, people pointed out that she looked more like a zombie version of the actress. Last year, Tabar posted images of her face covered in bandages to make her 50-surgery story convincing.
It later became obvious that Tabar had been altering her images to get the look that she wanted. The razor-sharp jawline, the bloated pout, and the mummified skin were all created with the help of makeup and photo editing tools. Tabar had shared an image of her real face, which does not resemble her usual Instagram look. During an interview, Tabar claimed that her fans knew that she used makeup and editing to express her art.
The Sun pointed out that local news sources claimed the arrest came after members of the public complained about Tabar's Instagram posts. Since her arrest, it is not known which jail she is being held at. Iranian prisons like Tehran's Evin Prison are hellish environments. Prisoners are often tortured and raped during their detention.
Instagram is one of the few social media platforms that are accessible in Iran. The arrest of Instagrammers restricts the freedom of Iranians using the app.