MORAINE, Ohio (WDTN) – 2 NEWS spoke with CNN and was told it is the North Korean Central News Agency that is reporting 56-year-old Jeffrey Fowle is facing indictment.
Fowle arrived in North Korea April 29, but has been detained since mid-May. It’s been reported he left a Bible in a hotel room. His attorney who appeared with Fowle’s wife earlier this month said Fowle was on vacation not a mission trip, though he does attend churches in Lebanon and West Carrollton.
According to reports out of North Korea, Fowle faces charges for carrying out “hostile acts.” The State Department strongly discourages Americans from visiting North Korea. 2 NEWS sought more information from the State Department, but did not hear back.
2 NEWS did speak with Congressman Mike Turner, and he said government leaders past and present are working to bring Fowle home. Turner said, “Certainly we’re very concerned. We continue work with the state department. Also, we continue to work with former Congressman Tony Hall who has connections through his hunger initiative in North Korea, and we’re certainly trying to support the family in ways in which hopefully can bring him home.”
Late today 2 NEWS got the following statement from Senator Sherrod Brown:
My thoughts are with the Fowle family. The detention of any American citizen in North Korea concerns me, especially one with Ohio ties. My office has been in regular contact with State Department officials and I will continue to remain briefed on the situation. The North Korean government should act immediately to release Mr. Fowle on humanitarian grounds so that he can return to the United States and his family.
Fowle works in the City of Moraine’s streets department. He has three children.
Another American being held in North Korea, 24-year-old Matthew Miller, is also expected to face trial.