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Two Chinese agents charged in US for targeting opponents in Beijing

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The targets were wanted by Beijing for embezzlement, the United States said (representation)

Washington:

The US Department of Justice on Thursday announced the indictment of two other suspected Chinese agents for their roles in an operation targeting Beijing’s opponents in the United States.

Nine defendants have been charged with “acting as unregistered agents” of China in a global operation dubbed “Fox Hunt” to repatriate suspected fugitives, the department said.

In October, five people were arrested in the United States for “participating in an international campaign to threaten, harass, monitor and intimidate” an anonymous Chinese target living in the United States.

The new indictment includes prosecutor Tu Lan, 50, charged with traveling to the United States in 2017 to lead “the harassment campaign” and subsequently obstructing the US investigation.

According to US authorities, Operation Fox Hunt involves extrajudicial “repatriation squads” operating clandestinely in an attempt to force expatriates to return to China.

Officially, the targets are people wanted by Chinese justice for corruption. But Washington accused the operation of targeting opponents of Chinese leader Xi Jinping, dissidents or critics.

The targets were wanted by Beijing for embezzlement, abuse of government power and accepting bribes, which can lead to heavy sentences in China, the justice ministry said.

According to the indictment, the defendants took the target’s father to the United States to persuade him to return to China, harassed his adult daughter to pressure him, and delivered threatening messages.

In September 2018, the department said, a note was placed on the target’s residence stating, “If you are ready to return to the mainland and spend 10 years in prison, your wife and children will be fine.” This is the end of this affair. ! “

The mission failed, according to US authorities.

The charge of acting as unregistered agents of China carries a maximum penalty of ten years in prison.

All of the defendants were also charged with engaging in and conspiring to engage in interstate and international criminal harassment.

(This story was not edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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