21 Aug 2011

Iran jails two Americans for spying

9:08 am on 21 August 2011

Two Americans accused of spying have been jailed for eight years by a court in Iran, the country's state media reports.

Iranian TV says Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal each received three years for illegally entering Iran and five years for spying.

The two men deny the charges, saying they unknowingly crossed into the country while hiking in July 2009.

Mr Bauer's fiance Sarah Shourd, who was detained at the same time, was released from an Iranian jail last year on medical grounds and returned home.

She says she wants Iranian authorities to show the same compassion to men as they did for her.

Iranian TV's website says the men have 20 days to appeal.

The United States does not have diplomatic relations with Iran and is trying to confirm the report.