‘Operation Fox Hunt’ has been threatening dissidents and their families living in America.
The U.S. Justice Department has charged eight people with working for the Chinese government in a campaign aimed at forcing a Chinese family to return to China to face charges, according to court documents.
Five of the eight were arrested Wednesday in five U.S. states, including an American private investigator hired to spy on the family.
The other three are thought to be in China. The United States does not have an extradition treaty with the United States, but requires that anyone working on behalf of a foreign power register with U.S. authorities.
Eight people have been charged with conspiracy to act as illegal agents for a foreign government and were involved in a covert operation that officials say was built on intimidation, intimidation and “very disturbing” tactics to force Chinese nationals living abroad and seeking Beijing. To return home.
The alleged plots were called “Operation Fox Hunt” and “Operation Skynet”, court records show.
“This is the first case of its kind, and I think it’s very important,” said Seth Ducharm, acting U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York.
“What this case really stands for is that it directly involves the efforts of a foreign power to carry out arbitrary operations on U.S. soil in violation of our laws.”
A spokesman for the Chinese embassy did not immediately comment on the allegations.
The criminal complaint alleges that the group conspired to target a former Chinese government employee and his wife and daughter who have been living in New Jersey since 2010.
Harassment also included sticking a “threat note” on their door.
The note reads: “If you want to go back to the mainland and spend 10 years in prison, your wife and children are all right. This thing is over! The Justice Department said in a press release. They also received packages containing threats and taped video threats on social media.
“With today’s allegations, we have turned the PRC’s Operation Fox Hunt on its head,” Assistant Attorney General for National Security John Demers said in a statement. “Five suspects arrested this morning by the FBI on charges of illegally bidding for the Chinese government in the United States are now facing jail time.”
According to notices posted by China with Interpol in 2012 and 2014, New Jersey named China as a fugitive on charges of kidnapping, abuse of power and accepting bribes.
Three of the defendants – Yu Yong, Hongru Jin, and Michael McMahon – were arrested Wednesday in New York and New Jersey.
The judge’s order was issued on a bond of 000 500,000, obtained through McMahon New Jersey property, and the government’s request to keep Yong Hu’s trial pending was rejected. He was also released on bail.
“I did not do anything illegal because I did not understand it,” Yonghu said through a commentator. “I have a legal career as a driver.”
Two others – Rong Jing and Zheng King – were arrested in California. The last three defendants – Fu Feng, Hu Ji, and Li Minjun – were in large numbers.
These arrests are among the recent actions taken by the Trump administration against China, a country that President Donald Trump considers a key rival.
The Ministry of Justice in July accused hackers working with the Chinese government of targeting companies developing vaccines for the coronavirus and stealing hundreds of millions of dollars worth of intellectual property and trade secrets from companies around the world.