RALEIGH, N.C. – A U.S. Army (search) deserter who spent decades in North Korea (search) says his communist keepers abused him and controlled every aspect of his life, down to telling him how often to have sex.
"It was the worst mistake anyone ever made," Charles Jenkins (search) said. "In words, I cannot express the feelings I have toward North Korea, the harassment I got, the hard life."
In an interview airing Sunday on CBS' "60 Minutes, Jenkins said he was given no painkillers when a tattoo on his forearm that read "U.S. Army" was cut off with a scalpel and scissors.
"They told me the anesthetic was for the battlefield," said Jenkins, a North Carolina native. "It was hell."
Jenkins was a 24-year-old sergeant when he crossed the border into North Korea. He stayed for 39 years, appearing in propaganda films and teaching English.
In 1980, he married a Japanese woman who had been kidnapped and taken to North Korea to train spies in Japanese language and culture. She was released in 2002 and Jenkins followed two years later, surrendering to U.S. authorities and serving a month in jail for desertion.
The couple now live in Japan.
Jenkins told "60 Minutes" that his government handlers assigned him a Korean woman with whom he was supposed to have sex twice a month, and they beat him severely when he balked.