A former official of the Central Intelligence Agency was arrested on charges of conspiring with a relative, who also worked for the CIA, to spy on China. Alexander Yuk Ching Ma, 67, was arrested and charged Friday, the US Department of Justice said. He is accused of revealing to Chinese intelligence officials sensitive national security knowledge. It is the latest intelligence arrest between Washington and Beijing at a time of increasing uncertainty. Mr Ma is due to appear in court on Tuesday and if convicted, faces a maximum sentence of life imprisonment. Mr Ma, a Hong Kong-born naturalized US citizen, started working for the CIA in 1982.
Seven years later, prosecutors said he left the CIA and served in Shanghai Chinese City, before moving to Hawaii in 2001. They accuse Mr Ma and his relative of spying for China in a scheme which started in March 2001 with meetings in Hong Kong over the course of a decade. The ex-CIA officers suspect of sharing information with the Chinese intelligence service “about the CIA ‘s staff, activities, and methods of covering communications.” Part of their Hong Kong meeting capturing on videotape and shows Mr Ma counting $50,000 (£38,000) in cash for the secrets they exchange, stating the release.
When residing in Hawaii, court records state, he then tries to collaborate with the FBI to once again obtain access to confidential US government information to pass on to China. He hires as a contract linguist by the FBI’s Honolulu office in 2004 and suspects of stealing classified identifying papers. It remains uncertain why the arrest of Mr Ma took so long. The unnamed relative Mr Ma’s conspired with is now 85 years old with whom prosecutors say. He also a naturalize United States citizen, born in Shanghai.
Court records state prosecutors are not actively seeking an arrest warrant because he suffers from a “advanced and disabling neurological disorder”. It is the latest indictment of former intelligence officers in a series of events. Jerry Chun Shing Lee, another former CIA officer, sentences to 19 years in prison in November for conspiring to spy for China. Mr Lee’s shares information is state to have help China break down a network of informants from 2010 to 2012.
Throughout that time, some 20 informants kill. Or imprisoned in one of the most catastrophic US intelligence failures in recent years. Another ex-CIA director, Kevin Mallory, sentence to 20 years in prison in May 2019. It is after accuse of conspiring to relay US military secrets to China. Former US intelligence operative Ron Rockwell Hansen sentence to 10 years in prison in September.
The US-China alliance has shrunk to its lowest point in decades. They engage in a bitter trade war since 2018. Also, US President Donald Trump threatened to ban the famous Chinese app TikTok earlier this month. The two economic superpowers also clashed in Hong Kong over the coronavirus pandemic. The controversial new security law imposed by Beijing. A Singaporean man pleaded guilty in the US last month to be working as China’s agent.
Chinese Intelligence Plan
Chinese intelligence hire him in 2015 after making a presentation in Beijing. It is when he was a PhD student at a prestigious Singaporean university, according to court records. Jun Wei Yeo, also known as Dickson Yeo, has been charged. It is with using his American political consultancy as a front for Chinese intelligence to collect information. In recent years the US has also been investigating allegations of economic aggression against China. Approximately 80 per cent of all economic spy cases brought by the justice department. It “alleged activity that would favour the Chinese state,” the department states on its website.