back to article Visa fraud charges: Uncle Sam accuses four Chinese eggheads of covering up their true ties to China's military

Four Chinese academic researchers in the United States have been accused of failing to declare on their immigration paperwork their true involvement with China’s People’s Liberation Army. “These members of China’s People Liberation Army applied for research visas while hiding their true affiliation with the PLA,” John Demers, …

  1. osakajin Bronze badge

    At least she's in her home country's embassy. I expect she'll have a bed instead of a couch... I wonder if she'll break Julian's record?

    1. DS999

      They might as well give her a job in the consulate, she's not going anywhere anytime soon!

    2. DS999

      I read today that she was arrested. There were no details released so not sure if she surrendered or was trying to make a dash for it and got caught.

  2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    Links to the army is a bit vague

    There is a box on the form when you arrive in the USA asking if you have been involved in espionage or sabotage

    An Israeli colleague who managed to dodge the marching and being shouted at bit of his compulsory military service by analysing spy drone images always wonders what would happen if he ticked yes

    1. herman Silver badge
      Black Helicopters

      Re: Links to the army is a bit vague

      I am an ex-army signals officer and I have been doing military work ever since. I will not tick those boxes either. The CIA probably knows me already anyway, so why bother.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Links to the army is a bit vague

        "I will not tick those boxes either. The CIA probably knows me already anyway, so why bother."

        Because, as with the case in this article, the boxes on visa forms, landing cards, ESTAs etc are there to catch you in a lie to the Feds.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Links to the army is a bit vague

          That was their big mistake... failing to tick that box

        2. Rich 2 Silver badge

          Re: Links to the army is a bit vague

          Exactly. It’s a bit like the recently proposed law to require spies in the uk to register as such. Nobody is actually expecting anyone to register. It’s just a legal tool to nab anyone who misbehaves.

        3. martinusher Silver badge

          Re: Links to the army is a bit vague

          Precisely. Its actually really difficult to enter the US without commiting some kind of visa fraud because of the way the questions or worded (not so much for you tourists but have a look at the paperwork needed for a work visa or permanent residence). Its not important unless the Feds want to make it important.

  3. Magani
    Black Helicopters

    Visa fraud charges

    Given the article's title, I came here looking for people trying to hack my credit card...

    Given the content though, I think the icon is more appropriate.

    1. JassMan

      Re: Visa fraud charges

      Must admit, I also read the entire article thinking it was clever of the authorities to use the fact the Chinese had been card skimming to find evidence of their other nefarious activities. It was only when I got to the end that I realised the students hadn't been so stupid after all and had just been unlucky in getting caught at not ticking all the boxes on a visa application. I guess if you do tick the box, your visa is automatically refused, but at least you don't end up in a prison cell.

  4. PhilipN Silver badge

    Barr

    Reckoned the USA was no. 1 in world technology by the 1890’s.*

    Are we then supposed to take anything else he says seriously?

    *or do we assume the poor Chinese emigres who helped to build the railways were actually there to loot the country’s IP?

    1. herman Silver badge

      Re: Barr

      I think what is worse, was how the West stole the Chinese pottery and gun powder secrets.

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
        Happy

        Re: Barr

        how the West stole the Chinese pottery and gun powder secrets.

        But I thought, after watching that documentary 'The Great Wall' that Matt Damon didn't steal the gunpowder in the end?

        Or did I fall asleep and miss something?

    2. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: Barr

      The British, French, Germans, Japanese and Americans built the first railways in China so not too much IP theft there.

      I wonder, if China was able to charge royalties on the invention of gunpowder how much would the West owe them now?

      1. PhilipN Silver badge

        Re: Barr

        Interesting point. I just googled “who built china's railways”. Convoluted history.

  5. herman Silver badge
    Joke

    Visa fraud - fortunately Mastercard and Amex were unaffected.

  6. Financegozu

    ... and the CCP mouthpieces will scream "Racism", "Hurting the feelings of the Chinese"

    ... or some other garbage. It's about time these thugs are weeded out

  7. Mike 16 Silver badge

    Telling the truth

    Found a copy of Les Earnest's tale about problems with telling the truth about a childhood incident:

    http://www.milk.com/wall-o-shame/security_clearance.html

    Or an expanded version which includes a link to what happens when you decline to self-identify as one of the 5 official "races".:

    http://web.stanford.edu/~learnest/les/crypto.htm

    1. J. Cook Silver badge

      Re: Telling the truth

      There's a followup, as well: https://web.stanford.edu/~learnest/les/mongrel.htm

      Certainly an interesting read. Thanks!

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    A spy that doesn't know how to delete?

    Shredding all free space, or even simply the trash bin, is pretty basic.

  9. martinusher Silver badge

    Just an everyday witchhunt, nothing to see here.....

    The particular researcher they were smoking out of the consulate in San Francisco -- the person mentioned in this article -- was working on radiation oncology. She'd been in the Chinese Air Force and I expect like other specialists in their home military they're still reservists.

    What's going on is absurd. The Federal government spins a good tale for domestic consumption -- and innumerable people lap it up because we wouldn't be America without some enemy or another threatening us -- but realixtically all they're doing is starving us and our research institutions of talented researchers. (I know if I were Chinese I'd think twice about even an undertgraduate course here.) If you look at science news and the names on published papers you find a lot of Chinese people these days, they're all doing good work and if they're working here they're contributing to our scientific reputation. If these boorish politiicans have their way then we will be just another once great backwater.

    Incidentally, someone mentioned Israelis and this pretty much shows the double standards we use here. It is reasonable to assume that that any Israeli you work with is active military because that's how their country works. I, for example, was working with a software group some years back and the group head was a submarine commander (yes, Israel has submarines), a programmer was a C130 pilot and so on. They were always going off for their three week stint enforcing security in whatever they call the occupied territories (the West Bank is under military oversight). However, being Israel they not only are not bothered by this with US visa forms they're also able to hold dual citizenship, something that's a big no-no according to the strict interpretation of the rules (you're not allowed as a citizen to work for a foreign government).

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