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Press Release

Chinese national faces federal charges of smuggling goods from United States and violating export control laws

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Pengyi Li, 33, of Guangdong, China, appeared in federal court on Monday for arraignment on an indictment charging him with two counts of smuggling goods from the United States and two counts of violating the Export Control Reform Act.

            A federal grand jury returned the indictment on August 29.   It accuses Li of committing the offenses between May 30 and August 22.  According to the indictment, Li allegedly attempting to export radiation-hardened drivers and microchips to China without obtaining a license and authorization from the Department of Commerce.  According to a criminal complaint, Li’s illegal conduct allegedly included communicating with an undercover agent in New Mexico.  The complaint also accuses Li of traveling from China to Hawaii to obtain the items and transport them back to China by airplane.  However, the complaint further alleges that law enforcement officers arrested Li before he could leave the United States with the items.

            Li appeared for his arraignment after being transported to New Mexico from Hawaii where agents from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) arrested him on August 22.  He is currently in custody awaiting placement at a halfway house.  Li faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted of the smuggling offense and up to 20 years in prison if convicted of violating export control laws.  An indictment is only an allegation.  A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty. 

            HSI investigated this case with assistance from the Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security, FBI and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jon Stanford is prosecuting the case.

Updated October 21, 2019

Press Release Number: 19-160