Retired U.S. Air Force Officer Pleads Guilty To Unlawful Retention Of Classified National Defense Information
Orlando, Florida – United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III announces the unsealing of an 18-count superseding indictment charging Amin Yu (53, Orlando) with acting in the United States as an illegal agent of a foreign government without prior notification to the Attorney General, conspiring to defraud the United States and to commit offenses against the United States, committing unlawful export information activities, smuggling goods from the United States, conspiring to and committing international money laundering, and making false statements to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. If convicted, she faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison on each of the money laundering counts, 10 years’ imprisonment for acting as an illegal agent and the smuggling offenses, and 5 years in prison for the remaining charges. The indictment also notifies Yu that the United States intends to forfeit approximately $2,668,648.92, the alleged traceable proceeds of the offenses.
According to the superseding indictment, from at least 2002 until approximately February 2014, at the direction of co-conspirators working for Harbin Engineering University (HEU, a PRC-controlled entity) in the People’s Republic of China (PRC), Yu obtained systems and components for marine submersible vehicles from companies in the United States. She then illegally exported those items to the PRC for use by her co-conspirators in the development of marine submersible vehicles – unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs), remotely operated vehicles (ROVs), and autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) for HEU and other state-controlled entities. It is alleged that Yu illegally exported items by failing to file Electronic Export Information as required by U.S. law and by also filing false Electronic Export Information. In particular, Yu completed and caused the completion of export-related documents in which she significantly undervalued the items that she had exported and also provided false end-user information for those items.
An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation, and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. It will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Daniel C. Irick, and Trial Attorneys David C. Recker and Thea D. R. Kendler of the Department of Justice, National Security Division, Counterintelligence and Export Control Section.