Palo Alto Man Held For Months in Nepal Jail Returns Home

A Palo Alto man who had been held in a Kathmandu jail for months after being arrested while on a charity work trip in Nepal has returned to the Bay Area.

Wolf Price and his family were expressing relief Monday after the 31-year-old arrived at San Francisco International Airport on Sunday night, his mother by his side.

"You're so terrified, anxious," Mary Bartnikowski said. "There's nothing easy about it."

Price spent the last 12 years in the South Asian country doing charity work, helping Nepalese women and girls pursue an education and find work, through his foundation Beyond The Four Walls. And he helped with earthquake recovery.

"He has always wanted to help people and he has a very pure heart," said Bartnikowski, who fought for weeks to get her son released.

On April 4, Price tried to break up a fight between a teenage boy and the boy's sister, and when police arrived, the teen told them that Price was beating him up.

"I made a mistake of taking pictures of police in my house. That made them angry," Price said, adding that police planted marijuana in his home. "It was scary. I was confident, but it's scary to see other foreigners who don't know how long they'll be there."

Price graduated from Palo Alto High School, and according to his mother, has dedicated his life to helping.

"He started spending his own money at first to send girls to school and to get computers for them," Bartnikowski said.

In May, she said she had hired a lawyer in Nepal to take her son’s case after she tried to get the American Embassy to help, and it couldn’t.

"This could all go away with the right kind of pressure on the government," Bartnikowski said at the time.

After weeks passed, Bartnikowski went to Nepal to oversee her son's case, securing his release 130 days after his arrest.

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