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Could Army Pvt. Travis King, just back from North Korea, face charges for desertion, going AWOL?

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WASHINGTON — Army Pvt. Travis King is out of North Korea, but he’s likely not out of trouble.

King, the soldier who sought refuge in one of the world’s most repressive regimes, returned to Fort Sam Houston in Texas Thursday. Teams of doctors and mental health professionals there will examine him and put him through the Army’s reintegration process, a ritual with roots in treating POWs from Vietnam.

On the other side likely lies military sanction. Possible charges include being absent without leave (AWOL) to the more serious crime of desertion.

“He’s in a world of hurt,” said Sean Timmons, a former Army lawyer at the firm Tully Rinckey.

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