The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) allegedly directed operatives to exploit the death of George Floyd and spread anti-democracy messages on U.S. social media platforms, according to an FBI affidavit unsealed on Monday.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) charged thirty-four Chinese National Police Officers on Monday with allegedly perpetrating a transnational repression scheme targeting United States residents. The DOJ alleges the defendants committed conspiracy to transmit interstate or foreign threats.
“As alleged, the Chinese government deploys an elite task force of its national police—the 912 Special Project Working Group—as a troll farm to attack Chinese dissidents in our country for exercising free speech in a manner that the PRC government disfavors, and spread disinformation and propaganda to sow divisions within the United States,” said Breon Peace, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, at Monday’s press conference.
Operating from a Chinese Ministry of Public Security (MPS) facility in Beijing, a specialized group of over thirty operatives allegedly used thousands of fake social media accounts to criticize the United States, according to the DOJ.
The FBI affidavit claimed the CCP directed the 912 Group to “expose and criticize the United States for wasting their effort to provoke conflicts in the South China Sea in order to drive a wedge between China, Vietnam, and Singapore; and to ridicule the United States’ retreat from Afghanistan having a major impact on its international reputation.”
Additionally, the 912 Group was allegedly tasked with echoing and spreading left-wing talking points regarding law enforcement and race.
The CCP allegedly ordered the 912 Group to “take advantage of the second anniversary of the [George] ‘Floyd’s death’ incident in the United States to reveal the law enforcement brutality in the U.S., racial discrimination, and other social problems.” according to the FBI affidavit. The group posted numerous times on social media accusing U.S. law enforcement of racism.
The CCP also allegedly tasked the 912 Group with sowing political dissent during the 2022 midterm elections. According to the affidavit, the 912 Group allegedly highlighted the political divisions between the Republicans and Democrats with statements that “elected leaders are corrupt opportunists that expose the ‘hypocrisy’ of American democracy, and questioned who actually had the interests of the voters at heart.”
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