Charles Jenkins: US Soldier Who Defected To North Korea Dies
A former US sergeant who defected to North Korea and became Pyongyang’s prisoner for nearly 40 years has died.
Charles Jenkins, 77, lived in Japan where he had settled with his family after his 2004 release.
He was among four US soldiers who defected in the 1960s and later became North Korean film stars, but was the only one who was released.
The others reportedly died in North Korea, including James Dresnok who was said to have died of a stroke in 2016.
Charles Jenkins died on Sado island on Monday, where he was living with his wife Hitomi Soga, also a former prisoner of North Korea.
He collapsed outside his home, Japanese media reports said, and later died of heart problems in hospital. His wife said in a statement that she was “very surprised” by his death and “cannot think of anything”, according to AFP news agency.