US hikers held in Iran go on trial

The trial of three U.S. hikers started Sunday in Iran, according to the office of the lawyer representing them. Iran accuses Americans Shane Bauer, 28, Josh Fattal, 28, and Sarah Shourd, 32, of spying and trespassing. They were detained July 31, 2009, after they allegedly strayed across an unmarked border into Iran while hiking in Iraq’s Kurdistan region. Shourd was released on bail in September 2010 because of a medical condition and immediately left the country. She has not responded to a court summons to return to stand trial, lawyer Masoud Shafii said Saturday. Iranian authorities said she will be tried in absentia if she doesn’t appear in court.

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