back to article FBI: How fake Xi cops prey on Chinese nationals in the US

Criminals posing as law enforcement agents of the Chinese government are shaking down Chinese nationals living the United States by accusing them of financial crimes and threatening to arrest or hurt them if they don't pay, according to the FBI. The miscreants involved in this financial fraud contact victims by spoofed phone …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Any moment now...

    ...I'm sure the usual suspects that infe[c/s]t these forums will be along to feed us their usual whataboutery and tell us all how the evil US/UK/West does things that are just as bad.

    Paging Gandalfcn, VoiceofTroll, and cohorts... you're on... drivel away...

    1. Blackjack Silver badge

      Re: Any moment now...

      [Insert Joke About the Republican Party Here]

    2. Blazde Silver badge

      Re: Any moment now...


      This is NSA! You must act now for your safety. We have been collecting informations on you for a long time now and we know everything about what you get up to and all your secrets. I think you know what we mean!! You have two options:

      Either we extraordinarily rendite you to %BADNATION% where you will be put in a secret basement with Lynndie England and subjected to round the clock techno music. Not good!

      Or you will transfer Bitcoin equivalent to 1,000,000 (1 million) US$ to our address 493pygjrsqn0yrf2kkfjhtzq2x0wlh83bc1qxy2kgd and we will give you lifelong immunity from all US government and five eyes nation hassles. Also because we will no longer be monitoring you internet traffic your download speeds will increase.

      Your choice, act now!

      [I was going to say you know you're running a truly evil outfit when the crims try to impersonate you to scare their marks, then I remembered all the HMRC spam we get...]

      1. NoneSuch Silver badge

        Re: Any moment now...


        That's the donation wallet for the John Oliver Koala Chlamydia Clinic.

      2. M.V. Lipvig Silver badge

        Re: Any moment now...

        Put me down for the techno.


  2. anothercynic Silver badge

    Would not surprise me if...

    ... If those 'miscreants' aren't actual Chinese government agents.

    I mean... look at the not-Chinese-police-people trying to pull Chinese protesters into the Manchester consulate during the protests there... and it's happening elsewhere too.

    Sorry, dear China-lovers, I'm not a fan of Chinese politics (and its government apparatus medusa). I love the people, but that's where the buck ends.

    1. lglethal Silver badge

      Re: Would not surprise me if...

      It also wouldnt surprise me but for a slightly different reason. Give anyone the chance to have effectively unregulated power and they will massively abuse it. We all know that Xi has used his corruption drives to wipe out all opposition in the CCP against his rule, but also I've not heard a single person complain that the corruption didnt happen. Pretty much the entire CCP is corrupt, but that at least allows for selective enforcement of corruption investigations.

      And now you have operatives given free rein to pull in specific people in the US (and around the world) that the chinese government wants. Why wouldnt you at the same time, enrich yourself a little by "pretending" to go after a few people not on the list, but let them "get off", with a suitable bribe of course.

      Seems a straight pass out of the usual corruption playbook...

      1. Peter2 Silver badge

        Re: Would not surprise me if...

        This actually makes me wonder.

        Did China import the "best" of Russian management practices along with communism from Russia back when, and as a result have the same basic set of corruption problems that Russia has today?

        The problem is that if you have systematic corruption baked into government then buying off authorities is probably actually a normal activity for running any form of business. It would therefore follow that everybody with more than more than poverty amounts of money has had to bribe the local authorities to let them run their business and probably pay a percentage to the local mob who might actually be the legitimate local government.

        If you get fed up with the game after making a few million and take your money and move abroad beyond the reach of the local extortion scam then the local authorities might "discover" that you've bribed people in the past and want to drag you back to China so they can confiscate the lot. Obviously speak out, and it'll end up badly.

        Is that what's happening here?

      2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: Would not surprise me if...

        On the other hand, crooks gonna crook. The opportunity to use Fox Hunt as a cover for criminal activity is real, so it's implausible that some criminals wouldn't be doing just that.

        There's all sorts of wickedness around. The public and private sectors are equally capable of it.

  3. Winkypop Silver badge
    Big Brother

    organized criminal syndicate

    Chinese government described in a lychee shell.

  4. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "people claiming to be law enforcement from China"

    Let's imagine for a second that they actually are.

    That still doesn't give them the right to enforce Chinese law outside of China. Not without a treaty between the USA and China and, these days, I really don't think that kind of treaty has any chance of becoming reality.

    Someone can very well show up at my doorstep in France and claim to be from the FBI. He can even show me his card. He is not the law in France and any menace will be met with a curt "Out !" and that will be the end of the story for me.

    It will be followed by a call to actual French police to warn them that there is a guy impersonating US FBI agents and going around threatening people, so that might not be the end of the story for him, but that's no longer my problem.

    Of course, I have no more family in the USA to be threatened with, so there's that.

    Even if China is actually sending proper law enforcement officers to try and get Chinese criminals to go back, that's not the way you do things. You negociate and extradition treaty and, once signed, you then submit extradition requests via the proper channels. But of course, that would mean China plays by international law, which is something it has a very hard time doing as soon as said law is not in its percieved immediate interest. That is how we get a nation acting like a schoolyard bully. And that including toward its own people.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    See also: India

    I notice India has started trying to pressurise countries to do their bidding.

    And is it a false memory that South Africa was quite aggressive about anti-apartheid protesters abroad ?

    Personally I worry that a deal-at-any-price post Brexit UK will quietly (and happily) do other countries dirty work on these shores. We've already had credible stories about shadow Chinese police stations being set up. And I can easily see a Chinese national in the UK being picked up (i.e kidnapped) and encouraged to return.

    The problem here is that the UK, US et al have done exactly the same in the past. So no clean hands here.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: See also: India

      Yeah, but US et al have been doing this in the name of democracy, so it's OK.

      1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: See also: India

        Do you people just have a tu quoque macro or something?

        One state's bad actions do not justify another's. And every rational adult here (which has to be a decent proportion of the readers) is perfectly aware that all governments have their share of sins.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: See also: India

        If you know the truth, and what the propaganda is, you know who is manipulated by the words they use.

        The only democratic part of the US is the election of candidates, the government "is" a republic.

        Governments are run by people, usually those in seek of personal power. Which is why- we can't have nice things/world is always broken.

        Looking forward to what our new AI overlords demand of us, er um, help us with...

    2. PhilipN Silver badge

      Re: See also: India

      If you were at Twickenham some decades ago when South Africa* played the Barbarians the True British crowd were quite aggressive about anti-apartheid protesters disturbing the game by voicing their opinions. It descended at the end of the match into countless Little Englanders in their buttoned-up raincoats and trilbies tossing seat cushions at the unwashed Long Hairs to the point the stadium announcer found it necessary to ask them to stop.

      * Man of the Match Davi de Villiers

    3. Sceptic Tank Silver badge

      Re: See also: India

      South Africa: Not protestors. I know that they targeted people in foreign countries who were suspected of planning terrorist attacks. There was also the time that the defence force drove over the border to Gabarone one night to wipe out a terrorist cell there. But then, the Israelis, Russians, Rwandans, Mormons, etc., etc. have all done the same thing at times.

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