Chinese Biowarfare Agents At Harvard University Caught Smuggling Viruses

After GreatGameIndia reported on the investigation on Chinese agents involved in a Biological Espionage case at a Canadian lab suspected to be behind the recent Coronavirus outbreak, now another Chinese Biowarfare agents at Harvard  University have been caught smuggling deadly viruses from America.


Chinese Biowarfare Agents at Harvard University Caught Smuggling Viruses
Chinese Biowarfare Agents at Harvard University Caught Smuggling Viruses

Chinese Biological Espionage at Harvard University

The US Department of Justice announced on January 28, 2020 that the Chair of Harvard University’s Chemistry and Chemical Biology Department and two Chinese nationals have been charged in connection with aiding the People’s Republic of China.

Dr. Charles Lieber, 60, Chair of the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Harvard University, was arrested and charged by criminal complaint with one count of making a materially false, fictitious and fraudulent statement.

Andrew Lelling, the U.S. attorney for Massachusetts, announces charges against a Harvard University professor accused of lying about his ties to China. (WJAR/Pool)
Andrew Lelling, the U.S. attorney for Massachusetts, announces charges against a Harvard University professor accused of lying about his ties to China. (WJAR/Pool)

Yanqing Ye, 29, a Chinese national, was charged in an indictment with one count each of visa fraud, making false statements, acting as an agent of a foreign government and conspiracy. Ye is currently in China.

Zaosong Zheng, 30, a Chinese national, was arrested on Dec. 10, 2019, at Boston’s Logan International Airport and charged by criminal complaint with attempting to smuggle 21 vials of biological research to China. On Jan. 21, 2020, Zheng was indicted on one count of smuggling goods from the United States and one count of making false, fictitious or fraudulent statements.  He has been detained since Dec. 30, 2019.

Dr. Charles Lieber

According to court documents, since 2008, Dr. Lieber who has served as the Principal Investigator of the Lieber Research Group at Harvard University, which specialized in the area of nanoscience, has received more than $15,000,000 in grant funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Department of Defense (DOD). These grants require the disclosure of significant foreign financial conflicts of interest, including financial support from foreign governments or foreign entities.

Dr. Charles Lieber
Dr. Charles Lieber – Chinese Biowarfare Agent

Unbeknownst to Harvard University beginning in 2011, Lieber became a “Strategic Scientist” at Wuhan University of Technology (WUT) in China and was a contractual participant in China’s Thousand Talents Plan from in or about 2012 to 2017.  China’s Thousand Talents Plan is one of the most prominent Chinese Talent recruit plans that are designed to attract, recruit, and cultivate high-level scientific talent in furtherance of China’s scientific development, economic prosperity and national security.

These talent programs seek to lure Chinese overseas talent and foreign experts to bring their knowledge and experience to China and reward individuals for stealing proprietary information. Under the terms of Lieber’s three-year Thousand Talents contract, WUT paid Lieber $50,000 USD per month, living expenses of up to 1,000,000 Chinese Yuan (approximately $158,000 USD at the time) and awarded him more than $1.5 million to establish a research lab at WUT.

In return, Lieber was obligated to work for WUT “not less than nine months a year” by “declaring international cooperation projects, cultivating young teachers and Ph.D. students, organizing international conference[s], applying for patents and publishing articles in the name of” WUT.

Dr. Charles Lieber in Wuhan in 2011
Dr. Charles Lieber in Wuhan in 2011

The complaint alleges that in 2018 and 2019, Lieber lied about his involvement in the Thousand Talents Plan and affiliation with WUT.  On or about, April 24, 2018, during an interview with investigators, Lieber stated that he was never asked to participate in the Thousand Talents Program, but he “wasn’t sure” how China categorized him.

In November 2018, NIH inquired of Harvard whether Lieber had failed to disclose his then-suspected relationship with WUT and China’s Thousand Talents Plan. Lieber caused Harvard to falsely tell NIH that Lieber “had no formal association with WUT” after 2012, that “WUT continued to falsely exaggerate” his involvement with WUT in subsequent years, and that Lieber “is not and has never been a participant in” China’s Thousand Talents Plan.

Chinese Agent Charles Lieber & His Virus Transmitters
Chinese Agent Charles Lieber & His Virus Transmitters

However, there is a mystery surrounding the nature of his work. It is said he was recruited for advanced research into nanowire-batteries. But investigation by GreatGameIndia has shown that Lieber was infact working on virus transmitters that could penetrate cell membranes without affecting the intercellular functions and even measure activities inside heart cells and muscle fibers.

Yanqing Ye

According to the indictment, Ye is a Lieutenant of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), the armed forces of the People’s Republic of China and member of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). On her J-1 visa application, Ye falsely identified herself as a “student” and lied about her ongoing military service at the National University of Defense Technology (NUDT), a top military academy directed by the CCP.

It is further alleged that while studying at Boston University’s (BU) Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biomedical Engineering from October 2017 to April 2019, Ye continued to work as a PLA Lieutenant completing numerous assignments from PLA officers such as conducting research, assessing U.S. military websites and sending U.S. documents and information to China.

According to court documents, on April 20, 2019, federal officers interviewed Ye at Boston’s Logan International Airport. During the interview, it is alleged that Ye falsely claimed that she had minimal contact with two NUDT professors who were high-ranking PLA officers. However, a search of Ye’s electronic devices demonstrated that at the direction of one NUDT professor, who was a PLA Colonel, Ye had accessed U.S. military websites, researched U.S. military projects and compiled information for the PLA on two U.S. scientists with expertise in robotics and computer science.

Furthermore, a review of a WeChat conversation revealed that Ye and the other PLA official from NUDT were collaborating on a research paper about a risk assessment model designed to decipher data for military applications.  During the interview, Ye admitted that she held the rank of Lieutenant in the PLA and admitted she was a member of the CCP.

Zaosong Zheng

In August 2018, Zheng entered the United States on a J-1 visa and conducted cancer-cell research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston from Sept. 4, 2018, to Dec. 9, 2019. It is alleged that on Dec. 9, 2019, Zheng stole 21 vials of biological research and attempted to smuggle them out of the United States aboard a flight destined for China.

The Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Centre in Boston where Zheng Zaosong was working as a researcher. Photo: Getty Images
The Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Centre in Boston where Zheng Zaosong was working as a researcher. Photo: Getty Images

Federal officers at Logan Airport discovered the vials hidden in a sock inside one of Zheng’s bags, and not properly packaged. It is alleged that initially, Zheng lied to officers about the contents of his luggage, but later admitted he had stolen the vials from a lab at Beth Israel. Zheng stated that he intended to bring the vials to China to use them to conduct research in his own laboratory and publish the results under his own name.

Thousand Talents Plan

The Thousand Talents Plan or Thousand Talents Program was established in 2008 by the central government of China to recognize and recruit leading international experts in scientific research, innovation, and entrepreneurship – in other words to steal western technology.

Scholars or Spies

China’s drives to recruit scholars and technology experts are a primary channel for harvesting US technologies and intellectual property, stated a June 2018 White House Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy document.

At an April 2018 hearing titled “Scholars or Spies”, organized by two subcommittees of the US House of Representatives, the commissioner of the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission, Michael Wessel, advised Congress to cut federal grants, loans or other assistance to participants of the Thousand Talents Plan. China has put “sleeper agents at our research universities to steal our scientific breakthroughs,” said Representative Lamar Smith, chairman of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, at the hearing.

Curious case of Chinese Biological Espionage at the Canadian lab

Similar case of Chinese Biological Espionage was busted at Canada’s National Microbiology Laboratory prompting a full-fledged investigation along with the dismissal of Chinese agents. Subsequent investigation by GreatGameIndia linked the agents to China’s Biological Warfare Program from where the virus is suspected to have leaked causing the Wuhan Coronavirus outbreak.

Curiously unlike the American investigation, Canadian authorities have been tight-lipped aboot the whole incident with details about the case still not fully revealed.

Facebook lies and blocks GreatGameIndia

After the publication of GreatGameIndia‘s story on Coronavirus Bioweapon, suspicious activity was observed tinkering with our database bringing the site down for a couple of days. Once restored the story published in full in one of the world’s largest Chinese TV News Network – NTDTV, The Week Magazine and numerous publications around the world. Then, Facebook sprung into action to block further awareness of the information.

Facebook blocks GreatGameIndia for Coronaviruses Bioweapon story
Facebook blocks GreatGameIndia for Coronaviruses Bioweapon story

The false and malicious lie being spread by Facebook says that they could not find GreatGameIndia’s Facebook page and that the information is missing. This is a ridiculous and laughable claim since our page is still active and Facebook itself have on many occasions been involved in a financial transaction with GreatGameIndia for marketing purposes.

This is no surprise given Mark Zuckerberg’s history of forgetting crucial information when grilled by authorities worldwide. So, we would just like to remind How Facebook’s Secret Unit created India’s Troll Armies for Digital Propaganda to Influence Elections.

For latest updates on the outbreak check out our Coronavirus Coverage.

GreatGameIndia is a journal on Geopolitics and International Relations. Get to know the Geopolitical threats India is facing in our exclusive book India in Cognitive Dissonance. Past magazine issues can be accessed from the Archives section.

Read more on Chinese Biological and Chemical warfare activities against India in our exclusive History of Narco-Terrorism issue.

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