A U.S.-based librarian held in China for more than five months on suspicion of gathering state secrets arrived Saturday in the United States after being released, saying the charges against him were "ridiculous" and vowing to continue his work.
"This is my real home," said Song Yongyi after arriving in Philadelphia to be reunited with his wife, Helen Yao.
Song, a Chinese national who worked at Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pa., was detained by Chinese authorities in August, a month after he arrived to conduct what colleagues called research on the history of China's 1966-1976 Cultural Revolution.
Song was formally arrested in December and accused of illegally sending documents containing state secrets out of China. His wife also was arrested but she was freed after three months.
China's Foreign Ministry said this week that Song had "confessed everything" and faced criminal proceedings, but he was instead released by China Friday and returned to the United States.