Iran says US journalist tried behind closed doors; verdict within weeks

A jailed American journalist charged by Iran with espionage stood trial behind closed doors and a verdict is expected within weeks, Iran's judiciary spokesman said Tuesday. Roxana Saberi, a 31-year-old dual American-Iranian citizen, was arrested in late January and initially accused of working without press credentials. But an Iranian judge leveled a far more serious allegation against her last week, charging her with spying for the United States. Judiciary spokesman Ali Reza Jamshidi said Saberi, who grew up in Fargo, North Dakota, was tried Monday in Iran's Revolutionary Court, which handles national security cases. "Yesterday, the first trial session was held. She presented her final defense. The court will issue its verdict within the next two to three weeks," Jamshidi told reporters. Saberi's father, who traveled to Iran in a bid to help win his daughter's release, and her lawyer could not immediately be reached Tuesday for comment.