The alleged Chinese spy who worked as a community affairs officer in a northeast Queens police precinct will be jailed until his trial, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York announced on Friday.
Baimadajie Angwang, a community affairs officer in the NYPD’s 111th Precinct, appealed the court’s decision to detain him prior to his trial. The appeal was denied on Friday, Dec. 11.
Angwang is accused of acting as an unregistered foreign agent, working with two members of the Chinese consulate in New York since 2018 to provide information on activities of Tibetans living in the New York City area, according to the feds. The naturalized U.S. citizen has also been charged with wire fraud, false statements and obstruction of an official proceeding.
Angwang’s lawyers argued that their defendant wouldn’t skip town before his trial in an appeal filed in court earlier this year. Additionally, they argued that the court had committed a legal error in Angwang’s initial proceeding by using the allegations against him to determine his “history and characteristics.” Lawyers for the defendant also argued that the court had committed several factual errors related to an interview with Angwang in their decision to detain him.
Ultimately, the court found no fault in its initial decision.
Angwang, who lives in Williston Park in Long Island, came to the U.S. on a cultural exchange visa and overstayed a second visa, eventually becoming a naturalized citizen after seeking asylum in the U.S.
In his asylum claim, the officer alleged that he had suffered arrest and torture at the hands of the Chinese government when in realty, as the criminal complaint alleges, he was working with the Chinese consulate to report on ethnic Tibetans living in the city.
Angwang faces up to 55 years behind bars if convicted.