Chinese Woman Gets 50 Months for Jet Engine Export Plot
A California woman of Chinese birth has been sentenced to over four years in prison after being found guilty of conspiring to export jet engines and drone technology to the People’s Republic.
Wenxia Man, aka Wency Man, 45, of San Diego, was hit with a 50-month jail term following her conviction by a federal jury in the Southern District of Florida on one count of conspiring to export and cause the export “of defense articles” without the required license.
These items are currently banned for sale to China under the terms of the Arms Export Control Act.
Man is said to have conspired with a man working for the Chinese military to illegally get hold of various pieces of hi-tech equipment including Pratt & Whitney F135-PW-100 engines used in the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter; Pratt & Whitney F119-PW-100 turbofan engines used in the F-22 Raptor fighter jet; and the missile-carrying $50 million General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper/Predator B UAV.
The man, who apparently went under the name Xinsheng Zhang, was referred to by Wenxia Man as a “technology spy” who was particularly interested in stealth tech.
However, she made a fatal mistake by double checking with an “industry source” if a specific jet fighter engine would be difficult to export. That source reported her to the Feds, according to a SunSentinel report.
She was subsequently contacted by an undercover agent claiming to work for a fictitious company who said he could get her the items she was after.
Naturalized US citizen Man did well to escape the 20-year maximum sentence possible for offences under the Arms Export Control Act.
She’s certainly not the first and won’t be the last Chinese-born resident of the US found guilty of trying to send military secrets to Beijing.
Earlier this month a former FBI technician pleaded guilty to acting as a spy whilst at the New York Field Office. He’s now facing a possible decade behind bars.
Also, in July, 51-year-old Chinese multimillionaire Su Bin, was sentenced to nearly four years behind bars after being found guilty of helping spies from his homeland steal military secrets.
Source: Information Security Magazine