An investigation is underway by two House Democrats into increased suspicions and allegations of espionage by Chinese scientists and researchers, reports the Washington Examiner.
Representatives Judy Chu (D-CA) and Jamie Raskin (D-MD) are asking for documentation from federal agencies about its suspicions.
“One study found that 52% of individuals charged under the Economic Espionage Act since 2009 have been of Chinese heritage,” they wrote. “But those defendants are more than twice as likely to be acquitted, or have all charges against them dropped, compared to defendants with non-Chinese names, suggesting that many individuals of Chinese heritage who were swept up in the FBI’s counterintelligence efforts were innocent and falsely accused.”
The two believe while there have been confirmed cases of espionage, the added scrutiny faced by Chinese may be racial profiling.
Last year the FBI called on universities to monitor both Chinese students and scientists for corporate espionage.
“China has pioneered a societal approach to stealing innovation in any way it can from a wide array of businesses, universities and organizations,” FBI director Christopher Wray said during a speech last April at the Council on Foreign Relations, reported The Hill. “They’re doing it through Chinese intelligence services, through state-owned enterprises, through ostensibly private companies, through graduate students and researchers, through a variety of actors, all working on behalf of China.”
Among those arrested for espionage, but later succeeded in getting the charges dismissed, are a Temple University physics professor and a hydrologist for the National Weather Service.
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