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EDNY Indictment of China Fox Hunt Has Zhu Yong Freed On Bail With Angwang Echo

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon Memo
BBC - Guardian UK - Honduras - ESPN

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Oct 28 – The penetration of the Chinese Communist Party into New York City, not only the nearly fully purchased United Nations of Antonio Guterres but even the NYPD, became clearer on September 21. Inner City Press first tweet here.

 According to an Eastern District of New York filing, on Inner City Press' Document Cloud here, NYPD Officer Angwang, an ethnic Tibetan from China, had CPC handlers in the Chinese consulate just south of the United Nations and reported to them information on pro-independence Tibetans in New York.

This also happens through the UN. This too:

"A complaint and arrest warrants were unsealed today in federal court in Brooklyn charging eight defendants with conspiring to act in the United States as illegal agents of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). Six defendants also face related charges of conspiring to commit interstate and international stalking. The defendants, allegedly acting at the direction and under the control of PRC government officials, conducted surveillance of and engaged in a campaign to harass, stalk and coerce certain residents of the United States to return to the PRC as part of a global, concerted and extralegal repatriation effort known as “Operation Fox Hunt.” Zhu Yong, Hongru Jin and Michael McMahon were arrested today, and their initial appearances are scheduled this afternoon via teleconference before United States Magistrate Judge Peggy Kuo. Rong Jing and Zheng Congying were arrested in the Central District of California, and their initial appearances will take place in that district later today. Zhu Feng, Hu Ji and Li Minjun remain at large."

So what about indictments there? So far SDNY has only gone after the bribers - Ng Lap Seng and Patrick Ho - and not the bribees, for example Antonio Guterres. Inner City Press, banned from the UN for asking about this, continues to report on it. On the morning of October 28 Inner City Press asked Guterres, Stephane Dujarric and Melissa Fleming: "What are the comment of SG Guterres on the October 28 arrests in the US of Chinese government conspirators by the EDNY - clearly a matter of global dipomatic contention. UNITED STATES OF AMERICA  - against - ZHU FENG, also known as “Johnny Zhu,” HU JI, LI MINJUN, HONGRU JIN, ZHU YONG, also known as “Jason Zhu,” MICHAEL MCMAHON, RONG JING and ZHENG CONGYING,  Defendants. Again, why did Guterres not list Gulbenkian, linked to CEFC China Energy, in his disclosure covering 2016?"

No answer at all.

Later on October 28, EDNY Magistrate Judge Peggy Kuo ordered Zhu Yong freed, despite this detention memo, now on Inenr City Press' Document Cloud here: "Now it's Yong Zhu, with interpreter. He asks if his attorney is on the line. Yes - and he advises to proceed by video. Zhu: Okay! Okay! Then he says since he doesn't have his real (Mission?) lawyer, he'll take free/CJA Royce Russell

 Yong Zhu says he doesn't know why he is being charged, what he did was totally normal. Judge: I just need to know if you understand the charges. Zhu: OK, yes, I understand to a limited extent.

 Zhu wants out on bail. He owns a house in Connecticut, proposed suretor is a border guard (!) and his wife works for United Healthcare. Judge: The pre-trial services report says he's divorced. Zhu's son: It's my wife who is Maggie.  [Lost in translation]

Are the EDNY prosecutors agreeing to this?? Would they appeal to a District Judge? The arguments seem similar to those in Angwang...

 AUSA: He was trusted to provide sensitive information about victims to the private investigator, and pass information back to PRC officials. He is a risk of flight and should be detained.  Judge Kuo: Is there a Chinese mission or consulate in Norwich, Connecticut?

AUSA: Looks like there's a Chinese consulate in Glastonbury (?) Zhu: No, there isn't one. [So he knows more than he lets on.]

Judge Kuo: Don't speak for yourself. There is a chance the defendant could seek shelter in a mission. But I think there are conditions

Judge Kuo: I will order him to stay out of Manhattan. From Connecticut to the EDNY without going through Manhattan.

 Judge Kuo: I will release Yong Zhu on $120,000 bond, with his friend Yin Zhu as suretor. And Maggie too. Stay in EDNY."

 On October 2, Angwang was ordered freed, with a stay until the end of the day. Then in an appeal, the stay was extended until October 6 or 7, pending briefings. Inner City Press live tweeted the appeal arguemnt, below.

On October 7, Judge Eric Komitee ordered Angwang's continued detention. Full 16-pagedecision here, free, on Inner City Press' DocumentCloud. Excerpts: "The weight of the evidence against the Defendant appears to be very strong, based on the government’s interception of multiple telephone conversations between Defendant and PRC officials. This factor must be weighed with caution, inasmuch as the American legal system imposes no punishment for crimes prior to conviction. See, e.g., United States v. Paulino, 335 F. Supp. 3d 600, 613 (S.D.N.Y. 2018). At this early stage in the proceedings, the Court reaches no conclusions about the merits of the government’s case. But the existence of concrete evidence — like intercepted telephone recordings — may weigh against release when it sheds light on a defendant’s role in an alleged crime. See, e.g., United States v. Fishenko, No. 12-CR-626, 2013 WL 3934174, at *2 1 Incidentally, in the majority of the most comparable of these cases, the defendant was detained pending trial. See, e.g., United States v. Butina, No. 18-CR-00218 (D.D.C.)...  Here, the government has identified over a hundred electronic communications Defendant made to the two PRC officials, reaching back to 2014. Those conversations suggest that Defendant strategized with the two officials to expand the PRC’s influence in New York, and that he took instruction from those officials. "

The Oct 2 argument: Judge Komitee says he wants to hear about possible jail time for Angwang, and if he might be deported if his citizen was procured by fraud. AUSA Michael Keilty: This morning Judge Bloom based her decision to free the defendant mostly on COVID Inner City Press @innercitypress · 1h AUSA: COVID is not a factor in the Bail Reform Act. But risk of flight is. Angwang was been operating as an asset for the People's Republic of China, the PRC. He has been in contact with the Chinese consulate AUSA: He was caught on judicially authorized wiretaps, telling PRC official 2 about targets, like a person running for political office in Ohio (!)

Note: Inner City Press reseach zeroes in on Aftab Pureval, here

 AUSA: This is about China trying to use soft power, to work through minorities. This division of the Consulate, this is their M.O. -  Judge Komitee: What paragraph of the Complaint?... Let's look at Paragraph 19.  The word "asset" has a particular meaning.

 Judge Komitee: So is organizing a trip to China, is that an intelligence activity? AUSA: One of their activities is to lobby US officials. In this case is would have been a fairly senior one.

 AUSA: "If Angwang walks into the Chinese Mission to the UN, we've lost him." Then, "We have the case of Julian Assange, who just holes up in there, in the UK." AUSA Keilty: The defendant is a liar. He was being deported and he sought asylum on alleged torture in China. Then when he applied for naturalization, he didn't disclose that he had ever faced deportation. And why did he then visit China again and again?

 Judge Komitee: I'm new to the INA. The definition of a refugee, here, is a person outside of China due to persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution. The defense says he did, based on ethnicity. Inner City Press @innercitypress · 55m Inner City Press interim research: Complaint says "On or about Feb 13, 2019, ANGWANG called PRC Official-2, and described a U.S. citizen of Tibetan ethnicity who ran for office during the previous election cycle. ANGWANG stated that although unsuccessful..."

 Angwang said, “So, if this person, if this person can get elected, he can, you can organize a trip to tour China. I think this news would generate very positiveAUSA: We have recorded phone calls bragging how the Chinese Consulate has recruited one in the police department. Judge Komitee: Was that just for a holiday party? AUSA: He entered alone.

 Judge Komitee: Did he enter five times? 20 times? AUSA: More than five. And we surveilled him having dinner with consulate officials. I don't know about you, but I don't keep other people's passport photos. Our evidence is strong. He should be detained.

 Judge Komitee: What about his wife? Is she Tibetan? AUSA: No. She is Han Chinese. I got a call from the FBI this afternoon that the immigration authorities have reached out about possible fraud in Angwang's naturalization.

Angwang's lawyer: Where to begin. Let's start with the passports he had. Mr Wang, he's well known to the government. He traveled to buy property in St. Kitts. One of the driver's licenses, Angwang doesn't know who the person is. Judge Komitee: Angwang was a personal assistant? Defense lawyer: Yes, before the NYPD. He traveled with Mr. Wang. He worked for him. Judge: Then why isn't it on his employment history in the pre-trial services report?

Defense: Well, it wasn't employment in the traditional sense. Anything else on the passport, Judge? Judge: No, not at the moment.  Defense: Of course he was persecuted as a teenager in China. We don't need to spend time on that.

 Defense: This morning nine suretors spoke. It was incredibly compelling. Now on the embassy, and the idea he's a bridge away from a nice life in Beijing. They talk about 55 years, but the actual exposure is smaller. The FARA charge is 10 year maximum.  Defense: I think there was recently a very lenient sentence on FARA. This is not about state secrets, this is about soft power. .. All they have is PRC-2. If you read my letter, you'll find he is a Tibetan. So he's kind of accepted by the community.

Judge Komitee: I may ask for expedited briefing on the FARA [Foreign Agent Registration Act] issue. NYPD is a position of trust. Identifying people for the PRC seems like a more serious FARA violation than a lawyer making a single call for a client

 Defense: I would focus on PRC-2... "There is a guy in Ohio you should meet" Defense: PRC-2 controlled Angwang's ability to go to visit his parents. Judge Komitee: That's about motive. Defense: A Han Chinese gets a 10 year visa easily. But a Tibetan? Six month process to get a 30 day visa. Angwang was saying, I just want my visa

 Defense: I don't see any jail time. The AUSA says it's all sinister. I don't see it. AUSA: This is not straight up FARA. I get very upset when defense counsel starts talking about, this is not classified info. But he was spying on his neighbors, for China. This is abhorrent.

AUSA: Angwang told the consulate, you should do X, Y and Z to get additional people like me. Give us 100% types 10 year visas so we can do more here.  Defense: He was lobbying this government bureaucrat.

AUSA (to Defense) - so this 100% stuff, I guess you can explain that away? Judge Komitee: There are still open factual disputes, about the prison time faced, and about the immigration issue. If the US can show Angwang's asylum application was procured by fraud

Judge Komitee: I'd like US briefing on Sunday on the sentencing guidelines, from across the country, and immigration law analysis, on denaturalization.  What past persecution enough? Or did he mislead about the future?

 Judge Komitee: And the defense can respond Monday, after seeing the US filings. Defense: 5 pm OK? I have a family commitment. Judge Komittee: 7 pm would be fine. Then I'll work hard on a decision. And I'll listen to the recording of Judge Bloom over the weekend.

AUSA: Continue he detention. Judge Komitee: I am staying Judge Bloom's decision until I decide, by close of business on Tuesday, or Wednesday. [Would US appeal to 2d Circuit?] Adjourned.

And from the morning of Oct 2:

Magistrate Judge Lois Bloom says she got a second letter this morning from the EDNY prosecutors, about Angwang as a risk of flight.  You might say.

Judge Bloom says there's a friend of Angwang's from the Marines, another who's a restaurant manager. She asks for Angwang's reply on risk of flight, and about what bail package might look like. Angwang's lawyer: OK, my client was in possession of travel documents

Judge Bloom: You're saying Angwang had other people's passports? Angwang's lawyer: Yes. He had a Mr. Wang's passport. They traveled together to Hong Kong and St. Kitts. There were two other people's passports who he had. Angwang was personal assistant to Mr. Wang

 Now Angwang's lawyer is saying he didn't mean to claim he had sought asylum, he just misunderstood the question. Says the fact that he returned to China doesn't mean he wasn't oppressed. But why was he going into the Chinese consulate on 35th Street so much?

To Inner City Press, explaining Angwang having Mr. Wang's passport by saying he was personal assistant to a man traveling to St. Kitts hearkens back to UN briber Ng Lap Seng and *his* personal assistant, Jeffrey Yin, here.

 Angwang's lawyer offer a million dollar bond. AUSA: All he would have to do is walk into one of those buildings and he's done. Of course the Chinese would want him - they could say, If you get caught, we'll help you. It's a recruiting tool.

AUSA: The PRC would use that as propaganda. He is very familiar with the consulate. He's not, as portrayed, a "Tibetan separatist." He is a PRC asset. The other ethnic Tibetans he's been trying to get in with visas are also assets.

AUSA: He also had other people's drivers licenses. Why? These are not Tibetan separatists.  Judge Bloom: I am not here to decided on his guilt, unlike the legal systems in other countries particularly the PRC. What about the conditions at the MDC? When a trial?

AUSA: We are restarting trials -- Judge Bloom: Only two at a time. And this is not even indicted yet. AUSA: OK, we are starting to restart trials. But the MDC has reinstituted attorney visits. Judge Bloom: We can't even get MDC on the phone. This took 30 minutes.

Judge Bloom: This man would likely be held for several years before this case would come to trial. AUSA: We'd try to move the case along. Judge Bloom: There is no vaccine.  

It sure sounds like Judge Bloom is going to release Angwang... She's interviewing suretors

Judge Bloom orders that no one call the interpreter, says she is prepared to release Angwang on bond. She apologizes to the suretors.

Judge Bloom asks Angwang's wife, how long have you been married? The wife hesitates, then says, Three years I think. Judge Bloom: Usually it's the husband who doesn't remember.

Judge Bloom wants to be sure Angwang can go out into the backyard of the house he'll be in.  Judge Bloom: Where does your mother work? Mrs. Angwang: She works in a casino, in Jamaica [Queens] She makes $60,000 a year

Another suretor is a USPS letter carrier. Judge Bloom: I always thought that would be the best career. You get to know everyone on your route.

Now Ms Liu, another (proposed?) suretor, says she met Mr. Angwang in China. Oh. Inner City Press @innercitypress · 39m Ms. Liu says that where she met Angwang in China he was called "Big Brother." He made a point of saying, "I am a minority."  That is, a pro-CCP Tibetan (?)

Next suretor is a realtor in Kansas City. Judge Bloom: I've heard they have good barbeque there. From the detention letter: "on or about January 29, 2014, a U.S. bank account jointly held in the name of Angwang and Angwang’s wife received separate credits of $50,000 and $20,000 from an account held in the name of an individual at the Bank of China in New York.

Magistrate Judge says Angwang is being freed. AUSA: We ask for a stay until the end of the day to appeal to the duty District Judge (Part 1). Mag Judge: But how will he get his GPS bracelet? Inner City Press aims to continue to cover this

 Now on phone line, someone is sputtering  (is it Zhang Jun?) It is said if he is release late in the day, he will be unmonitored over the weekend.

Watch this site.

 Inner City Press has asked China's UN Ambassador Zhang Jun about it: "What about today's indictment & detention of your citizen Baimadajie Angwang for spying on New Yorkers from Tibet for your consulate? Is it for your Mission that  @AntonioGuterres  has banned Inner City Press from #UNGA? What's your view of Patrick Ho/CEFC? Xièxiè." We said "we will report any answer(s)."

The response as been for China's "Ambassador" to the UN Zhang Jun to block Inner City Press on Twitter.

 Now on October 1, still blocked and banned from UNSC press conference, Inner City Press has learned that Angwang will be arguing for bail on October 2: "USA V. ANGWANG.   Criminal Cause for Bail Application.*  Deft. – Baimadajie Angwang, NYPD police officer charged with acting as an agent of a foreign government (People’s Republic of China) without prior notification to the Attorney General, wire fraud, false statements and obstruction of an official proceeding.  United States Magistrate Judge Lois Bloom." We'll be there.

Inner City Press published the detention memo, here.

  More than an hour late at 4:30 pm on September 21, Angwang was presented in EDNY. Inner City Press live tweeted it, here:

EDNY Magistrate Judge Roanne L. Mann asks Baimadajie Angwang if he understands his rights.

He says, "Yes your honor." [How many people has he Mirandized? For whom?]

She says the charge involves not telling the DOJ he was working for China.  [Note: in SDNY there's also a case of UN staffer Karim Elkorany for false statements, about him drugging and raping women in Iraq. The UN covered that one up - what's its role here?] Mann: You obstructed National Security investigation, per the charges.

Angwang has privately retained as his lawyer John Carman. [Who is paying him?] Angwang is consenting to detention, unlike for example PPP fraudster Muge Ma, and Patrick Ho was he was arrested.

Magistrate Judge Mann: I am entering a permanent order of detention without prejudice and am terminating the proceeding. 

Watch this site. 


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