MIAMI – A California woman was sentenced to 50 months in federal prison Friday for conspiring to illegally export fighter jet engines and unmanned aerial vehicles along with related technical data to the People’s Republic of China. The sentence resulted from an investigation conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Department of Defense’s Criminal Investigative Services.
Wenxia Man, aka Wency Man, 45, of San Diego, was convicted June 9 by a federal jury on one count of conspiring to export and cause the export of defense articles without the required license.
According to evidence presented at trial, between March 2011 and June 2013, Man conspired with Xinsheng Zhang, who was located in China, to illegally acquire and export to China defense articles including: Pratt & Whitney F135-PW-100 engines used in the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter; Pratt & Whitney F119-PW-100 turbofan engines used in the F-22 Raptor fighter jet; General Electric F110-GE-132 engines designed for the F-16 fighter jet; the General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper/Predator B Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, capable of firing Hellfire Missiles; and technical data for each of these defense articles. During the course of the investigation, when talking to an undercover HSI special agent, Man referred to Zhang as a “technology spy” who worked on behalf of the Chinese military to copy items obtained from other countries and stated that he was particularly interested in stealth technology.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Walleisa of the Southern District of Florida and Trial Attorney Thea D. R. Kendler of the National Security Division’s Counterintelligence and Export Control Section prosecuted the case.