Republican Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz said Monday that drones manufactured by Chinese company Da Jiang Innovations (DJI) are undermining national security as well as endangering civil liberties. (RELATED: Judge Napolitano: Politicians Are Taking Our Rights Away In The Name Of Public ‘Safety’)
“China is massively expanding a Trojan horse spying operation in our country, and your local police department may be unknowingly helping them,” Gaetz told Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”
The congressman explained that the the drones have been banned by the the United States Army and the Department of the Interior because the drones are suspected intelligence-gathering assets for the Chinese.
“The Department of Homeland Security wrote a scathing report that said that China specifically goes after local law enforcement. They did so even before the coronavirus so that they could get key information and transmit it to the Chinese government, and then our own Department of Homeland Security wrote that this is precisely the type of information we’re worried that China might sell to terrorists.”
Gaetz said DJI slashed prices by 70% on its drones to capture the international market and that the drones are being used during the coronavirus panic to enforce social distancing of the American population and, the congressman insists, spy on American law enforcement. (RELATED: Rep. Matt Gaetz: US Taxpayers Funding Chinese Research Center In Wuhan)
“DJI is openly bragging that they have just donated these Trojan horse gifts to over 22 states, to over 40 municipalities. When I talk to these municipalities in my own investigation, they say, ‘it’s no big deal, we fly them around the parks and tell people to disperse. Or we just make sure folks are social distancing,’” Gaetz said, adding that the devices are also transmitting information back to China.
“I believe the attorney general, under the existing authority that he has under the cyber security laws, should immediately ground the entire fleet of DJI drones used by U.S. law enforcement. We should not be spied on by our own government and giving the information then to a foreign government that’s hostile.”
According to a 2017 memo from the Los Angeles office of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement bureau, officials indicated that they had “moderate confidence” that DJI drones are passing along information about U.S. “infrastructure and law enforcement data to the Chinese government.”