Family: Iran Detainee Needs Better Legal Help

DETROIT (AP) – The family of an Iranian-American detained in Iran for four months on espionage charges says he’s not getting adequate legal representation.

The family of Amir Hekmati said in a statement Wednesday his “only advocate in Iran is a government-appointed lawyer who he first met on the day of his trial.” The statement says the family has tried to hire “at least 10 different attorneys … to no avail.”

Hekmati’s family says the former U.S. military translator was visiting his grandmothers. Iranian prosecutors say Hekmati was working for the CIA and could face the death penalty if convicted.

The 28-year-old was born in Arizona and graduated from a Flint high school. His father Ali is a professor at Mott Community College in Flint.

The State Department has called for Hekmati’s release.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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