A New York Police Department officer was arrested and charged on Monday (Sept. 21) for allegedly “acting as an illegal agent of the People’s Republic of China.” Officer Baimadajie Angwang —who is from Tibet — is accused of spying on fellow Tibetans living in New York and reporting their activities to officials at the Chinese Consulate.
According to the Eastern District of New York Attorney’s Office, Angwang is also charged with committing wire fraud, making false statements and obstructing an official proceeding. Angwang — who is also a U.S. Army reservist — “allegedly acted at the direction and control of officials at the PRC Consulate in New York City” since at least 2014 and served as a community liaison for the police department’s 111th Precinct.
In an arrest warrant for Angwang unsealed on Monday, the officer was accused of reporting the information about Tibetans to a Chinese consulate member who was his “handler.” The warrant included call logs and text messages between Angwang and the consulate member — whom he referred to as “boss” — dating back to 2018.
Prosecutors say Angwang “reported on the activities of ethnic Tibetans, and others, in the New York metropolitan area to the Consulate, spotted and assessed potential ethnic Tibetan intelligence sources in the New York metropolitan area and beyond and used his official position in the NYPD to provide Consulate officials access to senior NYPD officials through invitations to official NYPD events.”
Commissioner of the New York Police Department Dermot Shea responded to the accusations against Angwang on Monday. Shea said the officer “violated every oath he took in this country.”
“One to the United States, another to the U.S. Army and a third to this Police Department,” Shea continued. “From the earliest stages of this investigation, the NYPD’s Intelligence and Internal Affairs bureaus worked closely with the FBI’s Counterintelligence Division to make sure this individual would be brought to justice.”
Angwang reportedly appeared in court for the charges on Monday afternoon.