Fitaihi is a doctor who came to the US in the 1980s and worked there.
In 2006, he returned to Saudi Arabia to found a hospital that built his family. He would return to the US regularly for business reasons. He was detained at the Ritz Carlton Hotel along with other prominent Saudis in November 2017, his lawyer says.
"He was then transferred without explanation to a Saudi jail where he was held for nearly a year. Little contact was made with the outside world," a letter from his lawyer Howard Cooper to the State Department said in January he was asked for help.
"It is believed that Dr. Fitaihi was at least mentally tortured during the year and will be detained," the letter said.
] His family could occasionally visit and talk to him, saying "he has deteriorated physically" and he seems to be "emotionally broken" Cooper.
"He was detained without any process," Cooper tells CNN, saying it's "disgusting." The family now goes public for Fitaihi and calls on President Donald Trump and Presidential Adviser Jared Kushner to insist on the release of Fitaihi.
Cooper says Fitaihi is a well-known motivational speaker who "has become a recognized voice in Saudi Arabia's move toward more American-oriented notions of civil rights and equality," the letter said.
"The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia takes all allegations of mistreatment of defendants, who are waiting for convicts to serve their sentences, very seriously," said a Times spokesman for State of the Union, "Sunday of the Week." understood that we had "consular access", meaning that US diplomats visited him in Saudi Arabia, and we have no additional information at this point. "
Foreign Ministry officials have no request for comments from CNN sent back.