Years After Vanishing in Iran, Proof Florida Man Is Alive
Robert Levinson has been missing for 4 years
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 3, 2011 6:35 PM CST
Robert Levinson in an undated family photo.   (AP Photo/Courtesy of Christine Levinson)
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(Newser) – This much we know: A 63-year-old retired FBI agent from Florida who disappeared in Iran four years ago is still alive, reports AP. Beyond that, it's a guessing game. It's still uncertain who is holding Robert Levinson, or where, or even why. The best guess is that Iranian government agents took Levinson into custody in 2007, while he was in the country as a private investigator looking into cigarette smuggling.

Tehran has denied any knowledge of his disappearance, and conflicting reports have surfaced over the years of possible sightings. Late last year, however, Levinson's family received proof he was alive, a development the AP confirms. (The news service has seen the proof but is not saying what it is.) A brief statement from Hillary Clinton today said Levinson was probably somewhere in southwest Asia and asked Iran for help. Levinson's family isn't talking. "I am just so excited," said a neighbor. "I hope it's true."