A nonprofit group found 48 new overseas police stations with ties to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), one in Los Angeles and another in New York City. These two were unknown before. 

The new police outposts are among more than 100 in 53 different countries.

According to Safeguard Defenders, the CCP has used the facilities for an illegal campaign of transnational repression. This nonprofit organization posted an update on December 5 to its report back in September. 

Safeguard Defenders discovered that four police departments in mainland China had been building the facilities since 2016. The newly found outposts were set up in 2018 and run by the Wenzhou Public Security Bureau in the eastern province of Zhejiang.

On the surface, these facilities were created to help Chinese immigrants in foreign countries renew their driver’s licenses and visas—tasks usually done by consulates.

But in reality, the report found that these stations are linked to the United Front Work Department—a Chinese agency tasked with spreading propaganda, conducting overseas influence operations, stopping dissident movements, gathering intelligence, and helping communist China acquire technology.

Most importantly, Safeguard Defenders linked the stations to Operation Fox Hunt, a Chinese plan to scare dissidents and other CCP targets into returning to China and awaiting Beijing’s punishment.

In 2020, the FBI warned that Fox Hunt was a large-scale global repression operation that used harassment, threats, intimidation, and force to bring Chinese dissidents back to China. In many of these cases, the police used the Chinese diaspora’s ethnic and cultural ties to China as a weapon to get them to turn each other in.

In a November hearing, FBI Director Christopher Wray said that these Chinese stations broke U.S. law and were under investigation.

“I have to be careful about discussing our specific investigative work, but to me, it is outrageous to think that the Chinese police would attempt to set up shop—you know, in New York let’s say—without proper coordination.”

“It violates sovereignty and circumvents standard judicial and law enforcement cooperation processes.”

The FBI director said these facilities were part of the CCP’s transnational repression. The U.S. and 13 other countries are looking into the facilities, and the Department of Justice has charged many CCP agents in the U.S. with activities requiring registration.

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