A New York City police officer arrested on charges of spying for the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) remains in custody, despite $1 million bail granted by a magistrate judge.
The police officer, of Tibetan descent, Baimadajie Angwang, is also charged with acting as an agent of a foreign government, obstruction of justice, wire fraud, and making false statements, according to the Oct. 2 New York Post.
“I am prepared to release Mr. Angwang on a $1 million bond secured by the family’s residence as well as by all of your signatures,” said Brooklyn Magistrate Judge Lois Bloom.
However, U.S. Attorney Michael Keilty argued a “serious flight risk” and immediately appealed Judge Bloom’s decision, preventing Angwang’s release.
“All he has to do is go through that tunnel, cross that bridge, walk into one of those buildings, and we can never get him again. He’s gone,” Keilty said, giving the location of the CCP Consulate in Manhattan, where Angwang could apply for asylum and avoid the trial that awaits him.
Angwang has been involved in spying on supporters of Tibet’s free movement and delivering the reports to the CCP since 2018, according to the prosecutors’ report, Fox News said.
The CCP is accused of repression and other human rights violations against Tibetans and other minority groups in China.
According to information provided by former CIA counterintelligence chief James M. Olson, the CCP has redoubled its efforts to recruit spies among Chinese living in New York.
“China has multiple spies working on a particular project. So [an agent] may be getting small pieces of information, which seem inconsequential, but are part of a larger plan,” explained Olson, about some strategies used by the CCP.
Olson also estimates that the CCP agents in New York could be as many as 100, being very conservative in their estimate.
For U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, the CCP agents in New York are the largest center of espionage.
“They’re engaged in activities where they’re crossing the line from normal diplomacy to the kinds of things that would be more akin to what spies are doing” Pompeo told the New York Post.