As reported by CNN today [May 2, 2016] U.S. missionary Kenneth Bae acknowledged the support he received from former NBA player Dennis Rodman while detained in North Korea.

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The 46-year-old Bae was arrested in 2012 and held captive for 735 days.



Bae is a South Korean-born U.S. citizen who moved to China in 2005 to establish a company specializing in tours of North Korea. He was held captive after being arrested in November 2012 and sentenced 15 years of hard labor for committing “hostile acts.”

It was never clear what these acts were exactly, but in a pre-taped statement Bae had talked about making a “terrible mistake” in carrying a portable hard drive of anti-North Korean material.

His imprisonment gained prominent attention after former NBA star Dennis Rodman took to CNN to rant about the incident.

“You tell me why is he held captive?” asked Rodman. Bae sat down with CNN this morning discussing the experience and help from the controversial basketball star.

Kenneth Bae was born in South Korea and immigrated at age 16 to the United States with his parents. Bae was arrested in North Korea in 2012 and convicted by North Korea of "hostile acts'' in 2013, sentenced to 15 years' hard labor. He was released in November 2014

“I just want to thank Dennis Rodman for being a catalyst for my release because [after] his rant, media attention on my plight was increased,” says Bae.

Faith and supportive prayers kept him alive while detained until his wish came true in November 2014 when a top U.S. official arrived in North Korea, presenting a letter from President Barack Obama. Bae was then set free from the North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Bae was the longest-held U.S. citizen detained in North Korea since the Korean War.