North Korea Plans To Put Detained Boston Man On Trial

North Korea said Monday that it will put a detained Boston man on trial for illegally entering the country from China.

A North Korean agency decided to indict Aijalon Mahli Gomes as "his crime has been confirmed," the North's official Korean Central News Agency said in a brief dispatch.

A spokeswoman for Gomes' family says they are "praying for his speedy return home."

The spokeswoman said the 30-year-old Gomes grew up in Boston and graduated from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine in 2001. She said he had been teaching English for about two years in South Korea and his family lives in Mattapan.

North Korea said in January that it had detained an American man in addition to Korean-American missionary Robert Park but had not identified him until Monday.

In February, the North released Park after 43 days of captivity. The missionary defiantly crossed the border into North Korea on Christmas Day, shouting that he was bringing God's love and carrying a letter urging leader Kim Jong Il to step down from power.

Park's detainment came four months after two American journalists arrested at the border were freed and their 12-year sentences for illegal entry and "hostile acts" were commuted after former President Bill Clinton traveled to Pyongyang and met North Korean leader Kim.

This program aired on March 22, 2010. The audio for this program is not available.


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