US says China spy charged with trying to steal aviation secrets
US says China spy charged with trying to steal aviation secrets
Chinese Intelligence Official Charged With Stealing U.S. Aviation Secrets
11 October, 2018, 22:45
"If not the first, this is an exceptionally rare achievement - that you're able to catch an espionage operative and have them extradited to the United States", said John Carlin, a former assistant attorney general for national security.
In February, according to court papers, Zu recruited a GE Aviation employee, who sent him a presentation that contained the company's proprietary information.
We can not tolerate a nation stealing our firepower and the fruits of our brainpower.
Other entities linked to the Chinese economic espionage operation involving Xu included the Commercial Aviation Corporation of China and the Aviation Industries of China.
According to The Washington Post, the man was arrested after being lured to Belgium by USA agents and is suspected of having carried out his crimes since around December 2013.
The move is in line with a new law passed in August - the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernisation Act of 2018 (or FIRRMA) - in response to warnings from intelligence officials that advanced USA technology transferred to Chinese companies through acquisitions and other means may have undercut the American military's advantages over China.
Starting in 2013, court papers say, Xu targeted experts and engineers at American and foreign aviation and aerospace companies, including General Electric's Cincinnati-based jet engine subsidiary, GE Aviation.
The charges come amid heightened tensions between the two countries, and last week US Vice President Mike Pence accused China of attempts to undermine President Donald Trump ahead of the midterms next month.
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"We can not tolerate a nation's stealing our firepower and the fruits of our brainpower", Assistant Attorney General for National Security John Demers added. "We will not tolerate a nation that reaps what it does not sow". Xu later followed up with the employee asking for specific technical information and then asked the employee to meet in Europe, where he wanted the worker to provide additional information from GE.
Xu, a senior officer with China's Ministry of State Security (MSS), appeared in federal court in Cincinnati on Wednesday, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported. It has broad powers to conduct espionage domestically and overseas, the statement said.
Xu was arrested after traveling to Belgium in April.
"This unprecedented extradition of a Chinese intelligence officer exposes the Chinese government's direct oversight of economic espionage against the United States", said Federal Bureau of Investigation assistant director Bill Priestap.
NBC News on Tuesday quoted US officials as saying a professor at a top cancer research center in Houston facing child pornography charges was also under scrutiny for alleged economic espionage for China.
Federal agents lured a Chinese government spy to Belgium and arrested him.
"Whether they're small, medium or large and in every field from aviation to agriculture, companies should see that Chinese officials are seeking to acquire their intellectual property, not only through hacking, but also through the recruitment of insiders", Glassman explained.
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The pre-lunch meeting was also attended by former US football player Jim Brown and Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner . Trump said Wednesday. "There are people in jail for really long terms", Trump said in an interview with Fox News.
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