NYT. Federal officials arrested a Defense Department official in Virginia on 11 February and charged him with passing to agents of China classified defense documents about Taiwan’s arms purchases. About the same time, officials arrested a former Boeing engineer in California on charges of economic espionage, specifically stealing trade secrets from Boeing about the space shuttle and other projects on behalf of the Chinese government.
There was no direct connection between the arrests, but Justice Department officials announced them together, which seemed to underline what officials described as continuing Chinese efforts to obtain commercial and military secrets.
At a news conference, Kenneth L. Wainstein, assistant attorney general for national security, said: “While there are entities from over a hundred different countries trying to get access to our secrets or our controlled technology, there are a number of countries that have proven themselves particularly determined and methodical in their espionage efforts. The People’s Republic of China is one of those countries.”
Mr. Wainstein said, regarding China, “in the last six months, we have filed charges in a half-dozen cases involving efforts to acquire different types of technology, ranging from battlefield night-vision equipment to accelerometers used in the development of smart bombs and missiles.”
In the Virginia case, the authorities charged Gregg W. Bergersen, 51, of Alexandria with conspiracy to disclose national defense information to people not entitled to receive it. According to the document filed by prosecutors with the federal court in Alexandria, Mr. Bergersen received payments for providing information about the projected sales of weapons and military equipment to Taiwan.
The court documents said he was befriended by Tai Shen Kuo of New Orleans, a naturalized American citizen who was working for the People’s Republic of China. Mr. Kuo used an associate, Yu Xin Kang, to communicate with a Chinese government official. Both Mr. Kuo and Ms. Kang, also arrested Monday, face life in prison on separate espionage charges and Mr. Bergersen faces a 10-year sentence if convicted.
Mr. Bergersen was a weapons systems analyst at the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, which is part of the Defense Department and coordinates weapons sales abroad.
He met with Mr. Kuo several times, according to the court filings, and his conversations were apparently monitored by counterintelligence agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
The former Boeing engineer arrested Monday, Dongfan Chung, known as Greg, was indicted last week.