Michael J. Ellis
Visiting Fellow, Edwin Meese III Center
Michael is a visiting fellow for law and technology in Heritage’s Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies.
Since the administration pulled the plug on the initiative, 12 Chinese agents have been indicted or charged for conducting or directing operations inside the United States. According to court filings, these agents have: attempted to undermine the campaign of a U.S. congressional candidate; used information illegally obtained from federal law enforcement databases to harass and discredit Taiwanese independence groups, pro-Tibet, and Uyghur human rights activists; spied on pro-democracy activists living in the U.S.; and attempted to coerce Chinese citizens to return to China, so they can face “corruption” charges. Several of these cases involve former or current U.S. law enforcement officers who abused their positions in exchange for cash from Chinese intelligence services. All of these arrests were based on investigations that started well in advance of the administration’s decision to de-prioritize scrutiny of CCP activities in this country.