US court says Marzieh Hashemi held as material witness

TEHRAN, Jan. 19 (MNA) – Marzieh Hashemi, an US-Born anchor working for Iran's state television, is being held in the United States as a material witness and has not been accused of any crimes, a court document shows.

Marzieh Hashemi, who was born in the US as Melanie Franklin, is expected to be released from a Washington, D.C. detention facility after she testifies before "a grand jury investigating violations of U.S. criminal law," the court document released Friday said.

It is not immediately clear what case Hashemi's testimony is of interest.

Hashemi has been appointed an attorney and has made two appearances in federal court since her arrest, the document noted.

She was detained upon arrival at St. Louis Lambert International Airport in St. Louis, Missouri, on Sunday, but wasn't allowed to contact her family until late Tuesday.

Her arrest has drawn condemnation and criticism from the highest levels of the Iranian and foreign officials, including Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, Hizbollah, and Iran's Organization for Mobilization of the Oppressed (Basij).

"The custody of Iran's reporter in the US is highly political and she should be released immediately," Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said.

Here you can see the full text of court document released Friday:

LR

News Code 141669

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