Jenkins starts new life on Japanese island

Dec. 7, 2004 at 6:38 AM
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NIIGATA, Japan, Dec. 7 (UPI) -- The former U.S. Army sergeant who spent nearly 40 years in North Korea arrived with his family at his new home on Japan's Sado Island Tuesday evening.

Charles Robert Jenkins left the U.S. naval base Camp Zama Tuesday morning with his wife and two daughters. He had been convicted of desertion by a court-martial Nov. 3 and was released Nov. 27.

Sado Island in the Sea of Japan is the home of Jenkins' wife, Hitomi Soga. It was from there that Soga was abducted and brought to North Korea, where she met and married Jenkins.

Soga returned to Japan in 2002. She reunited with Jenkins and their North Korean-born daughters, Mika, 21, and Brinda, 19, in Indonesia in July.

After arriving in Japan in September, Jenkins turned himself over to authorities at Camp Zama.

Local authorities in Niigata prefecture said they will help Jenkins to find a job and his daughters to find schools. The family will live in the government-subsidized house in which Soga has lived recently, Mainichi Shimbun reported Tuesday.

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