China Sentences US Citizen to Life in Prison for Espionage

Jeffrey Clunn

The Chinese have sentenced a 76 year-old man named John Shing-Wan Leung, who is also a Hong Kong permanent resident, for life in prison for spying charges. Leung was originally detained on April 15, 2021 by authorities in the eastern city of Suzhou, in the Jiangsu province.  The Chinese court also took personal property from Leung which was worth 500,000 yuan, which translated into USD, it is $71,797. A spokesperson from the US Embassy in Beijing was asked about this situation and they said, “The Department of State has no greater priority than the safety and security of US citizens overseas. Due to privacy considerations, we have no further comment.” The US State Department also said, “We are aware of the sentencing

of a US citizen in the PRC on charges of espionage.”

This event has became relevant due partially due to the high escalations between the United States and China after the Chinese Spy Balloon that flew across the Continental United States. Ever since the shooting down of that balloon, there has been a rising amount of tensions between the two superpowers, but ever since the Chinese President Xi Jinping introduced the new Counter-Espionage Law, there has been more arrests of citizens of countries such as Canada, United States, and Japan.