Travis King

Travis King Wiki – Travis King Bio

Travis King, North Korea announced Wednesday it will expel Travis King, the US soldier who has been detained there since he ran across the border from South Korea in July.

King, 23, allegedly confessed to illegally entering the Hermit Kingdom following an investigation, officials said Wednesday morning via the Korean Central News Agency, according to the Yonhap News Agency.

“The relevant organ of the DPRK decided to expel Travis King, a soldier of the U.S. “Army who illegally intruded into the territory of the DPRK, under the law of the Republic,” the announcement read.

The young soldier — who was facing disciplinary action following a series of dust-ups in South Korea — was reportedly bitter over poor treatment and racism within the US forces, North Korea previously claimed.


Travis King is 23 years old.

US Soldier Ran Across the Border From South Korea

North Korea did not specify when King will be deported, or where the state will send him.

A spokesman for King’s family did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment early Wednesday.

King had been recently released from a South Korean prison and was set to fly back to the US when he slipped his military escort and was later caught on film at a tour of the Joint Security Area — the border village in the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas that is guarded by soldiers from both sides — on July 18.

“To our right, we hear a loud HA-HA-HA and one guy from OUR GROUP that has been with us all day runs in between two of the buildings and over to the other side!!” Swedish tourist Mikaela Johansson wrote of the moment the private second class — who was dressed in civilian clothes — dashed across the border into North Korea.

US officials later confirmed that King made a “deliberate decision” to cross into the infamously isolated Communist country.

A few weeks later, the Pentagon declined to grant the Wisconsin native prisoner of war status, but still insisted that he was “treated humanely in accordance with international law.”

North Korea finally confirmed that King was detained in the Hermit Kingdom in mid-August — and allegedly that he fled there because he was “disillusioned at the unequal American society.”

At the time, the US military declined to verify the 23-year-old’s accusation of mistreatment and discrimination by Army higher-ups, CBS News reported.

King’s apparent attempt at defection was not his first brush with trouble: A few months before the bizarre bolt, he pleaded guilty to charges of assault and destruction of public property related to two violent incidents in Seoul in the fall of 2022 — including one in which He did $460 in damage to a police patrol car.

He was fined $3,950 by the Seoul Western District Court, and was also facing disciplinary action from the US Military.

Incident Detail

King’s bewildered family said his recent behavior may be linked to the death of his 7-year-old cousin, who passed away last winter from a rare genetic disorder.

“When my son was on life support, and when my son passed away … Travis started [being] reckless [and] crazy when he knew my son was about to die,” King’s uncle, Carl Gates, told the Daily Beast.

The soldier’s mother, Claudine Gates, insisted that her son was loyal to the US and deserved to come home.

“I’m so proud of him. “I just want him to come home, come back to America,” she told ABC News.

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There is currently a State Department travel ban on North Korea, which was put in place when American college student Otto Warmbier was detained by authorities during a tour of the country in 2015.


The University of Virginia student was released and returned to the US in a coma in 2017, and died shortly thereafter.