Kim Lin, Fan Frank Liu, Matthew Zipuris, Giang Jason Sun, Shujun Wang accused of spying and harassment

The main focus of the strategy is to combat the transnational repression of dictatorial governments. Its launch coincided with the suspension of a project called the China Initiative last month The controversy erupted when officials said it was a misconception The department aims to prosecute ethnic Chinese. Judicial officials stressed that prosecutors are committed to cracking down on crimes such as espionage and cyber-attacks, especially those directed or exploited. Foreign governments.

The five defendants are accused of aiding and abetting the Chinese government’s efforts to persecute, pursue and monitor Chinese nationals in Queens and elsewhere in the United States. In one case, a U.S. military veteran who was a student leader during a 1989 pro-democracy demonstration in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square tried to track down a candidate running for Congress. That demonstration Was brutally crushed by the Chinese Government.

In another case, the defendants have been charged with crimes including criticizing the Chinese government and plotting to destroy the artwork of a Chinese national living in Los Angeles. In the third case, a former Chinese scholar who helped start a pro-democracy organization in Queens was accused of using his position in the Chinese community in New York City to gather information about prominent activists, protesters and human rights leaders and provide it to the Chinese Ministry. State Security (MSS), a secret police agency responsible for civil intelligence and political security.

“National repression harms people in the United States and around the world and threatens the rule of law,” said Assistant Attorney General Matthew G. Snyder. Olson said. The department said it would “not allow any foreign government” to threaten the safety of Americans and people coming to live, work and study in the United States or prevent freedom of speech.

U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, Prion Peace, said Wednesday’s unreported complaints reveal the outrageous and dangerous length at which Chinese secret police “went quietly to harass, discredit, and spy on U.S. residents simply for exercise.” Their freedom of speech. “

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He said all the victims were “targeted by their pro-democracy views”.

Three defendants were arrested and arraigned in Brooklyn court on Wednesday. The other two are undercover. The Chinese embassy did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The late Kim Lin, a Chinese citizen living in China, is said to have worked for the MSS.

Beginning last September, Lynn reportedly hired a private investigator in New York to disrupt the campaign of a Brooklyn resident running for Congress, including physically assaulting the victim. According to public records and open source information, the candidate Yan SeongHe came to the United States as a political refugee many years after the persecution in Tiananmen Square, later served in the U.S. Army and became a natural American.

Lynn explained to a private investigator who had previously been informing the FBI that he was working with others in China to prevent Yan from being selected, according to the Justice Department. Prosecutors allege that Lynn helped the investigator obtain Yan’s address and phone number, and asked the investigator to dig up “infamous information” about him, such as an affair or evidence of money laundering.

If no such information was available, Lynn wanted the investigator to “produce something”, prosecutors allege, citing as an example an incident that allegedly took place at a major concert pianist company in Beijing last fall. A prostitute. Prosecutors accused Lynn of “finding a woman.”

In December, Lin proposed that the investigator attack the elephant to prevent Yan from running in the June Democratic primary. In a voice message to the investigator, the prosecutors charged Lynn: “Beat him and beat him until he can not run in the election. Hey, that’s the last attempt.… Car accident, [he] Completely distorted, right? Or on election day, he can’t get there, can he?

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In the second case, Fan “Frank” Liu, Matthew Zipuris and Qiang “Jason” Sun were accused of plotting and attempting to harass Chinese government agents. Liu and Sun were accused of conspiring to bribe a federal official to obtain the tax account of a pro-democracy activist in the United States.

According to the complaint, Liu, a Long Island resident, is the head of a New York City media company and Jipuris, a Long Island native, is a former Florida state reform officer and bodyguard. Sun is said to be an employee at a global technology company based in China.

Prosecutors allege that Liu and Jiburissen acted under the direction of insulting pro-democracy Chinese opponents living in the United States, including New York City, California and Indiana. For example, a private investigator in Liu Queens allegedly bribed an IRS employee to obtain a taxpayer’s tax account with the intent of exposing the dissident’s possible tax liabilities.

Defendants also allegedly planned to destroy the artwork of a dissident who was critical of the Chinese government. The artist, whose name is not included in the collection documents, created the sculpture of President Xi Jinping. Corona virus Molecule. Silence said the sculpture was “demolished” last year, and no one has been charged with that vandalism.

Pretending to be an art dealer, Zipuris allegedly hid GPS tracking devices on the artist’s house and his car, which helped the Sun to track live feeds from China, prosecutors said. Authorities said they planned to install surveillance equipment in the defendants’ homes and in the cars of the other two protesters.

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In the third case, Quinn’s Shujun Wang was accused of acting as an agent of the Chinese government and of lying about his involvement in a transnational repression planned by the MSS. Wang, a former visiting scholar and writer, promoted political and economic reforms and helped find an organization reminiscent of two former leaders of the Chinese Communist Party who were forced out of power.

However, since at least 2015, Wang has been operating secretly in the direction of the MSS, prosecutors allege. Considering his status within the Chinese-American community in New York City, he was able to inspire activists to share their views on democracy in China, as well as planned speeches, writings and demonstrations against the party.

Among the victims of his efforts are pro-democracy groups in Beijing, prosecuted by pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong, Taiwanese independence activists and Uyghur and Tibetan activists in the United States and abroad.

In April 2020, prosecutors said a victim, a Hong Kong pro-democracy activist, was arrested in Hong Kong and imprisoned on political charges for allegedly informing the Chinese government of Wang. In April 2019, Wang reportedly flew from China to New York carrying a handwritten document with the names and contact information of dozens of well-known dissidents, including Hong Kong Democrats arrested in 2019 and 2020.

U.S. Magistrate James Cho has set a $ 1 million bond for Liu, an American citizen who has lived in the United States for nearly four decades. Jipuris and Wang were waiting for their appearance before Cho on Wednesday afternoon.

Alice Critts contributed to this report.

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