Jeffrey Edward Fowle

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Jeffrey E. Fowle
Born c. 1958
Miamisburg, Ohio, U.S.
Occupation Municipal worker
Country  North Korea
Detained May 4, 2014
Released October 21, 2014
Days in detention 170
Reason for detention Proselytism[1]

Jeffrey Edward Fowle (born c. 1958) is an American citizen arrested in North Korea in May 2014 for leaving a Bible in a club in the northern port city of Chongjin.[2]

Personal information[edit]

Fowle is from Miamisburg, Ohio, and worked in the Moraine, Ohio[3] municipal street department.[2] His wife, Tatyana was born in Russia, and they have three children.[2]


In May 2014, Fowle was arrested in North Korea after authorities discovered a Bible he had deliberately left behind in the restaurant toilet at the Chongjin Sailor's Club.[4] Religious proselytism is a crime in North Korea.[1] At the time, Fowle was one of three incarcerated Americans in North Korea and they were individually granted interviews continually pleading for help. September 1, 2014 was the first time these captives were allowed to interview together with two American news stations, CNN and The Associated Press.[5]


On October 21, 2014, Fowle was released and flown out of North Korea on a U.S. government jet.[1] Sweden facilitated Fowle's release as United States and North Korea do not have formal diplomatic relations.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d Jakes, Lara (21 October 2014). "1 American Released From North Korea". ABC News. Associated Press. Retrieved 21 October 2014.
  2. ^ a b c Welch, William M. (2 September 2014). "Who are the Americans held in North Korea". USA Today. Retrieved 22 October 2014.
  3. ^ "Jeffrey Fowle, American Detained in North Korea, Was on Vacation, Lawyer Says". Newsweek. Reuters. 9 June 2014. Retrieved 22 October 2014.
  4. ^ Pearson, James (2 October 2014). "U.S. Tourist Jeffrey Fowle Was Detained In North Korea For Leaving Bible In A Bathroom". Huffington Post.
  5. ^ Choe Sang-Hun (September 1, 2014). "In Interviews, 3 Americans Held in North Korea Plead for U.S. Help". Retrieved September 2, 2014.