Both the hikers along with Sarah Shourd were arrested on July 31, 2009 while hiking on the border region of Iraqi-Kurdish region and allegedly crossed into Iran illegally.
Shourd was released on medical grounds while the other two have languished for two years in Iran and now have been sentenced to eight years in prison, according to the state-run Iranian TV on Saturday. The sentence to each is five years for espionage -- specifically "cooperating with the American intelligence service" -- and three years for illegal entry, the Iranian media IRINN reported.
They have 20 days to appeal their sentence, which was handed down by the Revolutionary Court, Iranian media reported.
Sure they were most likely imprisoned for the crime of being American in the wrong place, but I don't have all that much sympathy for these guys. Seriously, who thinks "I know, let's go for a hiking holiday... I hear the Iran/Iraq border is nice at this time of year! What could possibly go wrong?"