Four persons arrested in Los Angeles are part of a Chinese intelligence-gathering ring, federal investigators said, and the suspects caused serious compromises for 15 years to major U.S. weapons systems, including submarines and warships.
U.S. intelligence and security officials said the case remains under investigation but that it could prove to be among the most damaging spy cases since the 1985 one of John A. Walker Jr., who passed Navy communication codes to Moscow for 22 years.
The Los Angeles spy ring has operated since 1990 and has funneled technology and military secrets to China in the form of documents and computer disks, officials close to the case said.
The ring was led by Chi Mak and his wife, Rebecca Laiwah Chiu, along with Mr. Chi’s brother, Tai Wang Mak, and his wife, Fuk Heung Li, officials said.
Key compromises uncovered so far include sensitive data on Aegis battle management systems that are the core of U.S. Navy destroyers and cruisers.
China covertly obtained the Aegis technology and earlier this year deployed its first Aegis warship, code-named Magic Shield, intelligence officials have said.
The Chinese also obtained sensitive data on U.S. submarines, including classified details related to the new Virginia-class attack submarines.
You have to give the Chinese their due credit here. The US Navy is China’s biggest obstable to crossing the Taiwan Straits. They went after Aegis (the Navy’s shield) and the Virginia-class SSNs, which are the Navy’s latest, quietest, and deadliest subs. Most worrisome is that those aren’t just brand new boats – they’re also designed to work in “brown water,” unlike the Los Angeles-class boats they’re replacing.
Heads ought to roll after getting sucker-punched like this.
Is there any good news here? Uh… the best I can think of is, at least Washington didn’t officially sell sensitive technology to China, like it did a decade ago.