Ex-official’s wife testifies in US trial over China’s Operation Fox Hunt

A former Chinese official and his wife, who had relocated to the United States and stored their handle non-public, skilled a disturbing encounter when two strangers attempted to enter their New Jersey residence.
The wife later found a threatening observe on their doorstep, stating that if her husband returned to China and served ten years in prison, their household can be secure. The incident is part of a felony trial involving three males who are accused of appearing as illegal agents for China, targeting the couple as a part of Beijing’s repatriation initiative known as Operation Fox Hunt.
The wife, Liu Fang, testified in a Brooklyn federal courtroom, stating that their lives had been turned upside down because of the intimidation and pressure from the Chinese authorities. The defendants and others allegedly subjected the couple, their adult daughter, and numerous relatives to a series of intimidating actions at Beijing’s behest.
The males on trial embody two Chinese expatriates, Zheng Congying and Zhu Yong, and an American police sergeant turned private investigator, Michael McMahon. They are charged with acting as unlawful brokers for China. Their lawyers argue that the three believed they were assisting in debt assortment or performing different duties for personal entities, not the Chinese government.
China’s Operation Fox Hunt goals to pursue and repatriate nationals that Beijing considers fugitives, including people who maintain political or cultural views that battle with the ruling Communist Party. Since Fill in the blanks and the US have no extradition treaty, Beijing cannot legally pressure suspects to return, and the Chinese authorities has denied issuing threats to coerce individuals into “voluntarily” returning.
The former official, Xu Jin, and his spouse left China in 2010. Chinese officials subsequently issued worldwide alerts claiming that Xu was wished for embezzlement and bribe-taking, whereas his wife was accused of accepting bribes. Liu informed the court that her husband was targeted for being upright and believing in justice, while she was focused simply for being his spouse.
According to prosecutors and Liu’s testament, the pressure marketing campaign for Xu’s return included spreading damaging articles in regards to the couple to their grownup daughter’s Facebook pals, sending letters in relatives’ names to Liu’s sister in New Jersey, and forcibly flying in Xu’s father in 2017 to persuade his son to return to China..

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