Controversial Alaskan speaks out about his misadventure across the Bering Sea to Russia

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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - *Editor's Note: To clarify the timeline of Mr. Martin's story, in the original article text, his marriage is dated to 2007. Martin was married in 2006.

John Martin III is a controversial name in Alaska.

He's the same John Martin known for his six-month sidewalk protest outside of Anchorage City Hall in 2011. Martin is also a registered sexual offender who spent eight years in prison on related charges.

Then in 2015, he faced manslaughter charges in multiple trials for his role in a fatal DUI-related crash that took place the year before.

Most recently, Martin's name popped up in headlines around the world after he set sail across the Bering Sea for China in an 8-foot dinghy. Martin eventually drifted off course and found himself stranded on the remote east coast of Russia near Lavrentiya.

Russian security forces were alerted and took custody of Martin. Over the next six months, he appeared in court multiple times for being in the country without documentation.

According to Martin, judges dropped the charges twice because he was being held in the country against his will. Eventually an appeals court reversed the previous rulings.

He was then transported to Moscow and held at a deportation center until he was sent back to the United States.

As for the reason behind his journey, Martin said he was trying to reunite with a wife and son in China. He says he was married in 2006 but shortly afterward, his passport was revoked because he'd failed to keep up with child support payments from a previous marriage.

Since then, Martin has tried to make his way into Asia multiple times. Despite his foray into Russia, Martin says he's still looking for a way to make his return to China.

Martin plans to write a book about his travels. He documented the trip extensively on his personal website No Ocean Too Wide.



 
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