In a closed court hearing, the prosecution applied for capital punishment, the report said, because the suspect, identified as Amir Mirzaei Hekmati, “admitted that he received training in the United States and planned to imply that Iran was involved in terrorist activities in foreign countries” after returning to the U.S.
The report said Mr. Hekmati repeated a confession broadcast on state TV Dec. 18.
Under Iranian law, spying can lead to the death penalty only in military cases.
The Fars report said Mr. Hekmati’s lawyer, who was identified only by his surname, Samadi, denied the charges. He said Iranian intelligence blocked Mr. Hekmati from infiltrating, and under Iranian law, intention to infiltrate is not a crime.
Because his father is Iranian, Mr. Hekmati is considered an Iranian citizen.