Chinese Spies Infiltrate US Navy

( – US Federal prosecutors announced on August 3 that authorities arrested two US Navy sailors on charges related to spying for the Chinese regime. The two suspects were accused of sending national defense classified data to China’s intelligence officials in return for cash payments. However, the prosecutors said that the cases of petty officers Jinchao Wei and Wenheng Zhao are separate.

Wei was arrested and charged with conspiracy and committing communications of defense data to foreign governments. According to US officials, the 22-year-old 2nd class petty officer was serving as a mate board-machinist on the USS Essex, which is receiving maintenance service at San Diego’s Naval Base. He was born in China and became an American citizen in 2022.

Zhao was arrested by NCIS and FBI agents and was charged with receipt of bribes by public officials and conspiracy. The 26-year-old petty officer was working at Port Hueneme’s Naval Base in Ventura County. Officials said he and Wei obtained an active security clearance which provided full access to top-secret documents.

During a press conference in San Diego, Jthe ustice Department’s assistant attorney general for national security Matthew Olsen said their crimes allowed Beijing to receive “sensitive military information.” He also told reporters that these charges show the Chinese regime’s “determination” to get top-secret US national defense information by any means necessary.

When asked about China’s intentions, Olsen explained that intelligence agencies from this country are trying to obtain top-secret documents so they can use them “to their favor.” He also told reporters that Wei and Zhao’s conduct represents a clear violation of the “solemn obligation” of military members to defend the United States.

According to different reports, both are alleged in their indictments to have worked with officers from Chinese intelligence agencies, to whom they delivered the classified material. The top-secret documents they handed over to these agents contained information about the technologies they were working on and upcoming US Navy operations.

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