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Chi Mak: A Spy By Any Other Name Is Still A Spy

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Have you heard of Chi Mak?  He was convicted in federal district court in Orange County, CA yesterday.  The Los Angeles Times has this write-up, which begins:

A Chinese American engineer was found guilty Thursday of conspiring to send information about U.S. Navy technology to China that would make it easier to detect U.S. submarines.

Chi Mak, a naturalized citizen, was convicted of conspiracy to violate export control laws, attempting to violate export control laws, acting as an unregistered agent of the People’s Republic of China, and lying to the FBI….

Prosecutors described Mak as a sleeper agent who began preparing for his assignment in the U.S. in the 1960s, when he moved from China to Hong Kong, then a British colony. Federal agents said Mak admitted sending military-related documents to China and they found thousands of pages of the files in his home.

(Emphasis added.)  Do you suppose that the PRC sent only one?

What was he transferring to the PRC?

The prosecution’s case was built around three encrypted computer disks containing military-related information. Mak’s brother and sister-in-law were arrested Oct. 28, 2005, just before boarding a plane to China with the disks. The disks contained information about an electric propulsion system for warships, a solid-state power switch for ships and a PowerPoint presentation on the future of power electronics.

Bill Gertz also has a piece on the conviction that notes that  “U.S. officials close to the case said the spying operation showed China’s sophistication at gathering defense technology to further Beijing’s rapid military buildup. The trial provided a rare look into the shadowy world of Chinese technology collection efforts in the United States.”

The PRC is not our friend.   This case underscores that basic fact of the next century. We are in a hot war with the jihadists, but the cold war with the PRC is still very much underway, and the PRC’s spy ring deserves a great deal more attention than it has received.


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