The US Justice Department announced on Monday that it would file charges against thirteen Chinese nationals accused of trying to exert “improper influence” on the US in favor of their country in three separate cases. Two of them, He Tang and Wang Zheng, tried to pay bribes to obtain information about a court case opened in New York against the American citizen. Chinese tech giant Huawei.
The other of the two remaining cases involved seven Chinese nationals who, as they denounced at a press conference, attempted to forcibly return a fellow refugee in the United States and his family to China. According to the department’s data, the defendants, two of whom have been arrested, repeatedly tortured and threatened a certain man and his son, who fled China and became a refugee on American soil, to forcefully sign a confession. They will be handed over to their country’s authorities ahead of the XX Congress of the Communist Party of China, which ends this Saturday, in which President Xi Jinping has been appointed for a third term.
The incident was part of a plan by Chinese authorities – widely condemned by human rights groups – to capture fugitives from justice and protesters dubbed “Operation Fox Hunting”.
The third case — a term used to refer to espionage for China’s benefit — involved four people, including three officials from the Ministry of State Security, which is in charge of China’s secret services.
He and a buying US official paid $41,000 in bitcoin to steal documents related to an investigation into a “global telecommunications company accused in an open court case,” according to data released Monday. Justice did not reveal the name of the company, but it is consistent with data from Shenzhen-based tech giant Huawei.
The two Chinese suspects were believed to have recruited the officer to their cause as early as 2019. In fact, he was a double agent working for the FBI. In September 2021, he and Wang asked for information about meetings the agent said he had with the New York Eastern District Attorney’s office. In particular, prosecutors wanted to know which company employees had been interrogated. They were also interested in what was involved in the prosecution’s strategy, what evidence the prosecution had, and the list of witnesses.
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In October 2021, the allegedly corrupt official sent Wang and He a page of a classified “secret” document that stated his intention to indict and detain two people living in China. “That’s what I’m looking for,” he replied. A month later, after paying for the bitcoins, he told the agent (identified in court documents as GE-1) that the company “didn’t tell me anything specific, but it’s clear they’re very interested in getting more pages.” . of the alleged document.
The two Chinese nationals are accused of trying to interfere in a court case and money laundering. He faces up to forty years in prison, while Wang could get up to twenty years in prison if convicted.
“The Judiciary will not tolerate attempts by any foreign power to undermine the rule of law on which our democracy is based,” said US Attorney General (equivalent to Attorney General), Merrick Garland.
New York prosecutors filed charges against Huawei in 2018 for lying to various banks about its transactions in Iran, subject to US sanctions. As part of that case, the technology company’s finance director and daughter of the company’s founder, Ren Zhengfei, was arrested in Canada. Meng WanzhouHe finally returned to China earlier this year.
Other charges were added to the indictment in 2020, including conspiring to steal trade secrets from six U.S. technology companies and helping Iran locate dissidents during anti-government protests in 2009. Huawei has always denied all the allegations And it sees itself as hurt by US efforts to limit competition from Chinese tech companies against its companies.
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