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Chinese intelligence officer sentenced to 20 years in prison for spying

Washington – A Chinese intelligence officer convicted of economic espionage and stealing aviation trade secrets from companies including General Electric (GE) will serve 20 years in federal prison Wednesday after a year of jury trials in Ohio. was sentenced to convicted Him in all respects.

Yanjun Xu, the deputy director of China’s intelligence agency, known as the Ministry of State Security (MSS), was indicted in 2018. He selects executives of foreign technology companies and works to extract the information he needs from them.

According to the Justice Department, Xu once used an alias to pose as a Chinese university and attempted to steal technology related to GE Aviation’s composite aircraft engine fan, which has not been imitated by any other company in the world. Hmm. Prosecutors said they arranged and paid for an apparently unwitting industry expert to travel to China to obtain the information.

One GE employee who was in contact with Xu and his co-conspirators gave a presentation at a Chinese university in 2017 that investigators said contained details about an engine designed and manufactured by an American company. I said yes.

Following the return of GE employees to the United States, the government announced that sentencing memorandum, the FBI hijacked communications between employees and Xu to infiltrate the operation. During this time, an MSS official asked an American employee to “betray” his company, pretending to be a Chinese university, saying, “I have contacted the scientific research department here to ask what kind of technology is required. We will let you know what to prepare in January 2018. A few days later he writes again: [sic] to system code. “

“Xu was involved in widespread deception, computer hacking and theft,” prosecutors wrote in court documents ahead of Wednesday’s sentencing. “He’s made a career out of committing these crimes against foreign companies, all on the premise that he’ll never face the consequences of his actions.”

Xu’s crimes came to the fore in 2018. arrested in belgium He was then extradited to the United States to face prosecution. He was eventually convicted of “aggressive extortion” of U.S. employees “to achieve his illegal ends,” the government claimed.

Prosecutors sought a 25-year prison sentence. This is the first time that a Chinese intelligence official has been extradited to the United States and put on trial. They said Xu’s crimes must be punished to deter others from carrying out similar plans.

However, in the pre-judgment memorandum one’s ownXu’s lawyers argued that the government’s position “far exceeds the sentences received by other individuals convicted of crimes related to theft or attempted theft of trade secrets.”

They claimed that Chinese officials were serving the country in carrying out the plan. Describing Xu as his father, husband and devoted family man, defense counsel writes the defendant: of his employment. ”

“The government suggests that the prosecution and severe punishment of one alleged Chinese agent would ‘deter’ the entire nation, government structure, and political agenda.

Xu was also accused of acting as a handler for a recently convicted MSS agent in Chicago and directing assets to install malware against a French aerospace manufacturer.

After Ohio Judge Timothy Black sentenced Xu to 20 years in prison on Wednesday, Attorney General Merrick Garland said the ruling “would not investigate the seriousness of these crimes and the efforts of the Chinese government or foreign powers.” It shows the Department of Justice’s determination to prosecute. It threatens our economy and national security.”

China’s predatory trade tactics and accusations of espionage have intensified scrutiny by federal agents and the FBI in recent years. FBI Director Christopher Wray told a House panel on Tuesday that China is the biggest long-term threat to U.S. national security, and that Chinese operatives are seeking to outperform the U.S. as a superpower on the world stage. He said he would use a number of illegal tactics to

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/chinese-intelligence-officer-yanjun-xu-sentenced-espionage-stealing-trade-secrets/ Chinese intelligence officer sentenced to 20 years in prison for spying

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