Another university professor charged in China ties, grant fraud

I’m not sure how many more of these we need to see before we realize that we’ve got a very serious China problem on our hands and it has nothing to do with their military (or at least not much) or their control of the global supply chain, though that’s a disaster of its own. China has been stocking up our country with spies and shoveling technological secrets out by the bucketload. Some of their biggest bases of operation are found in our universities, where their money allows them to get their hooks into American liberals who are very hungry for that sweet, sweet, Chinese cash cow. In other places, they export their own people to settle in the United States while still maintaining their covert ties to the homeland.

Today’s story combines elements of both and it takes place at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Professor Gang Chen has been working at the school for decades as a research scientist and educator in the field of nanotechnology. But this week the FBI came to get him, alleging that he has taken millions of dollars in grant money from the U.S. government while also receiving even larger amounts of funding from China in addition to handsome payments directly to his personal coffers. He never disclosed his ties to China and has apparently been sending reams of technical data and research material back to Beijing. (CBS Boston)

An MIT professor was charged Thursday with millions of dollars in grant fraud for allegedly hiding his relationship with China. Gang Chen, 56, was arrested at his home in Cambridge and search warrants were executed at his house and office.

The FBI in Boston said Chen failed to disclose his work with China to the U.S. Department of Energy when he applied for millions of dollars in grants.

“Our investigation found Chen was working with the Chinese communist government in various capacities dating back to 2012 at our country’s expense,” Joseph Bonavolonta, the Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Boston, said at a news conference in Boston, announcing the charges.

Bonavolonta said Chen knowingly defrauded taxpayers out of at least $19 million in grants to enhance China’s research in nanotechnology.

Gang Chen was born in China but later emigrated to the United States (legally) and eventually became a naturalized citizen. He’s done quite well for himself in his new home, but it seems that he never actually cut ties with his former bosses in the Chinese Communist Party, despite having sworn to play on our team when he became a citizen.

How well has he done? He was certainly able to advance his research work with the nearly $20 million in grants he defrauded (the FBI’s wording, not mine) from American taxpayers under false pretenses. The funding he received from China was closer to $30 million. On top of that, he received at least $355,000 for his “services and expertise” from China without disclosing any of that money to either MIT or the U.S. Government. Pretty good work if you can get it, eh?

None of this happens entirely in a vacuum. It simply can’t. You know that the FBI is going to find more threads to pull and there will be additional professors inside of the system at MIT who have been playing footsie with the Chinese Communist Party. The money is too tempting and the communist system in China is probably pretty appealing to at least some of the liberals at these universities who have been steeping in the socialist tea for too long.

Yes, we’re talking about espionage, fraud, and the theft of intellectual property. But we’re also talking about something that tiptoes up to the line of actual treason. The Chinese are running an invasive intelligence operation right inside of our own country and they are being abetted by faculty members at some of our most prestigious (supposedly) schools. No wonder the Chinese keep cranking out so many groundbreaking leaps forward in technology. They’re stealing right from under our noses. There needs to be a very thorough housecleaning in all of these universities. I only hope the FBI is up to the task.