U.S. 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.

ranian authorities said she will be tried in absentia if she doesn't appear in court.

The trial is closed to the press and the public, as is normally the case with revolutionary court proceedings.

The lawyer said he had been denied permission to see Bauer and Fattal the day before the trial began. He told CNN he has reviewed his clients' case file and doesn't see any evidence of a crime.

"In my opinion, they haven't done anything wrong," Shafii said. "The accusation of spying is baseless, and if they trespassed into Iran, it wasn't their fault."

Shafii said the border area where the hikers are accused of trespassing is unmarked and anyone could unwittingly cross over into Iran.

Human rights groups have condemned their arrests and their lengthy wait for a trial in Tehran's notorious Evin prison.