A U.S. district judge sentenced a Chinese national and former U.S. Army reservist to eight years in prison Wednesday for illegally acting as a Chinese government agent, the Justice Department (DOJ) reported.
Chinese security official Xu Yanjun instructed Chicago resident Ji Chaoqun, 31, to relay information about U.S.-based Chinese engineers and scientists for potential recruitment as part of an effort to access advanced U.S.-developed aerospace and satellite technologies, according to the DOJ’s press release. Ji enlisted in the U.S. Army Reserves in 2016, falsely claiming no foreign government contact in the previous seven years, and told an undercover law enforcement agent in 2018 that he would pursue a CIA, FBI or NASA job after getting U.S. citizenship and security clearance.
Ji was convicted in October 2022 of acting as a foreign foreign government agent without first notifying the Attorney General, conspiring to do so, and making a material false statement to the U.S. Army, the DOJ said. He originally moved to the U.S. in 2013 to be an Illinois Institute of Technology engineering student, CNN reported.
Xu was sentenced to 20 years in prison the next month after becoming the first Chinese government official ever extradited to the U.S. for trial. (RELATED: Bill Gates Says China’s Rise Is ‘A Huge Win For The World’)
“This unprecedented extradition of a Chinese intelligence officer exposes the Chinese government’s direct oversight of economic espionage against the United States”, stated #FBI Assistant Director for Counterintelligence Bill Priestap.
— FBI Cincinnati (@FBICincinnati) October 10, 2018
The DOJ did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for further comment.
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