As talk of a new cold war between the US and China heats up, an arrest on Tuesday was new evidence of increased scrutiny of Chinese living in America.
Chinese national Ji Chaoqun, who was living in Chicago on a student visa, was picked up by authorities and charged with acting as an unregistered foreign agent in the US. According to a press release issued by the US Department of Justice, Ji is suspected of working under the direction of a high-level intelligence officer in the Jiangsu Province Ministry of State Security.
Ji was scheduled to make an initial court appearance Tuesday evening, according to the Justice Department statement, which said he could face up to ten years in prison, if convicted.
According to the complaint, the accused is suspected of reporting biographical information on eight potential recruits for Chinese intelligence services.
In 2016, Ji enlisted in a US Army Reserves program open to foreign nationals and had specifically denied recent contact with a foreign government in his application.