New York City cop who spied on fellow Tibetans for China out on bail
DHARAMSALA, 18 Feb: A New York City Police Department officer and United States Army reservist who has charged with acting as an illegal agent of China by spying on fellow Tibetans in the city was released on $2 million bond from a federal jail on Wednesday.
A federal magistrate had ordered officer Baimadajie Angwang’s release on Wednesday, as soon as he was fitted with an electronic ankle monitoring device, reports the Newsday, an American daily newspaper.
The 33-year-old cop, a naturalized US citizen from Tibet had been held in the federal Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn since his arrest in Sept. last year.
“Mr Angwang is free today on the strength of 13 people who believed in him so much that they committed to a two million dollar bond. He is going to enjoy an evening with his wife and daughter,” Angwang’s attorney, John Carman was quoted as saying in the report.
Though a federal prosecutor labelled Angwang’s actions morally “spying on his neighbor … so repugnant,” Carman has claimed that “his client was only providing his handlers with publicly available information in order to get better visa terms for himself and other Tibetan nationals.”
Following his release, “Angwang would be confined to his home except for trips to his lawyer and doctors, and could not travel outside the Eastern District, which includes Long Island, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island,” the report added citing Magistrate Vera Scanlon.
Charges against the spy cop include four felonies, “including acting as an agent of a foreign government without notifying the United States, wire fraud, making false statements and obstruction of an official proceeding.”
The spy cop who has been suspended without pay was previously denied bail but last week, US District Judge Eric Komitee, who had previously denied the police officer bail, said Angwang’s situation had notably changed, the report noted.
The Judge has further cited the increase in the proposed bond from $1 million to $2 million, prosecutors not opposing bail for a number of other people recently accused of being Chinese agents in an unrelated case and the special procedures required for a case involving sensitive security information as reasons for granting bail.