- The Washington Times - Monday, August 12, 2013

The American who’s been serving out a 15-year sentence in a North Korean labor camp has lost 50 pounds and been sent to a hospital for observation and treatment, his sister said.

Kenneth Bae was taken into custody in the country in November and sentenced five months later for “hostile acts to bring down its government,” CNN reported. Mr. Bae, who has made several trips to the country for reasons related to charity and business, has denied the political charge.

He’s now suffering from back and leg problems. His sister Terri Chung told CNN he’s lost more than 50 pounds and is in poor health. The information came by way of the U.S. State Department and the Swedish ambassador to North Korea who visited with Mr. Bae on Friday.

“I think the last three months in the labor camp have certainly been very trying on both his mental and physical health,” she said, CNN reported.

The United States has called on North Korea to free Mr. Bae.