The FBI claims that Tang Juan, a Chinese biologist, lied about her connection to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) military in order to receive a U.S. visa. She managed to take refuge in the Chinese Consulate in San Francisco and thus avoided being arrested.
According to the documentation presented to the Court, Tang is a researcher in biology of Chinese origin. She entered the United States last year with a nonimmigrant visa in order to carry out research at the University of California.
When photos of her in a military uniform were found on the internet, the FBI sounded the alarm and began an investigation. On June 20, the FBI was able to interview her in order to gather information about her visa application. At that time she claimed that she had never served in the Chinese army nor was she a member of the Chinese Communist Party.
The FBI immediately executed a search warrant on Tang’s house and found additional evidence of her military affiliation and her involvement as a doctor at the CCP’s Air Force Medical University (UMFA). On June 26, the U.S. government filed legal charges against Tang for visa fraud.
The FBI said in a court filing that after meeting Tang on June 20, the suspect went to the Chinese Consulate in San Francisco where she remains.
There is documented evidence of at least one case that could be similar, in which a military scientist named Chen Song was found copying or stealing information from U.S. institutions by taking orders from senior military officials in China.
Song was an “active duty military scientist of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) who lied her way into the United States, attempted to destroy evidence, and lied extensively to the FBI when interviewed,” the government wrote in the indictment documents.
““Defendant’s case is not an isolated one, but instead appears to be part of a program conducted by the PLA—and specifically, FMMU or associated institutions—to send military scientists to the United States on false pretenses with false covers or false statements about their true employment” the FBI said, referring to Song. Another case involves an alleged spy working for UCSF.
On Wednesday, the U.S. State Department ordered the CCP to close its consulate in Houston, Texas. According to other media reports, government officials said the action was taken to protect private U.S. information and intellectual property.
Cai Wei, the Chinese consul general in Houston, told KTRK-TV that the closure order was “quite wrong” and “very damaging” to U.S.-China relations.
When asked about the allegations of espionage and data theft, Cai Wei said, “They would have to give some evidence, say some of the facts. … Knowing Americans, they have the rule of law, you are not guilty until proven guilty.” He also threatened that the regime would soon retaliate against decisions taken unilaterally by the U.S. government.
On Tuesday, the Justice Department said that two citizens of Chinese origin were accused of having tried to steal commercial secrets by violating computer security and entering the data of a company working on a vaccine against the CCP Virus. Both individuals are believed to be in China and fugitives from U.S. justice.
The closure of the consulate in Houston marked another step forward in the tense relationship between the United States and the Chinese Communist Party. This now adds to White House allegations about the CCP Virus, trade disputes, human rights claims, the Hong Kong Security Law, the South China Sea and the list seems endless.