Wednesday, December 28, 2011

American Citizen Could Face Death Penalty for Alleged Spying in Iran

Amir Mirzaei Hekmati, 28, a native-born US citizen whose father is Iranian, appeared in a closed court hearing earlier this week and heard the prosecution ask for capital punishment, stemming from Hekmati's being charged of working for the CIA. Hekmati's attorney has denied the charges.

COMMENT: Hekmati, who was born in Arizona, was arrested while in Iran during a visit to see his grandmother. Because of his family heritage, Hekmati is considered to be Iranian. Iran charges that as a US Marine, Hekmati received special training and served at US military bases in Iraq and Afghanistan before heading to Iran for his alleged intelligence mission.

It is unwise for US citizens of Iranian heritage to travel to Iran for any reason, given the high tensions between the two governments.

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