OK! Magazine reports that journalist Laura Ling—sister of former The View co-hostess Lisa Ling—has been sentenced, along with her colleague Euna Lee, to 12 years of “reform through labor” at a prison camp in North Korea following a five-day trial, during which they were convicted of “grave crimes” against the country.
Ling and Lee had been on assignment for Al Gore’s Current TV, doing a story in China on the international trafficking of women in the sex trade, when they were arrested on March 17.
The two were accused of crossing into North Korea illegally, but it has been speculated that the pair were abducted and taken across the border against their will. Since their case was heard by the land’s highest court, no appeal is possible.
It’s believed by many that the two are being held by North Korea as leverage in negotiations with the United States and the United Nations on issues ranging from North Korea’s atomic-weapons program to humanitarian aid.
Have your say in the comments section: Do you think that Ling and Lee will be released before their 12-year sentence is up?