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The Risk of CCP Influence on the DOJ for National Security and Legal System

Karoline Leavitt

The Department of Justice (DOJ) is the backbone of the American legal system, responsible for enforcing the law and ensuring that justice is served. Recently, however, there have been concerns about the influence of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) on the DOJ and the threats that could pose to our legal system and national security.

The CCP is known for its aggressive tactics in infiltrating foreign governments and organizations, including the use of bribery, cyberattacks, and propaganda. In recent years, the CCP has been accused of using these tactics to gain access and influence in the United States, including in the political and legal spheres.

CCP infiltration of U.S. government organizations has existed as a threat for decades. However, recent years have revealed just how deep these infiltrative tactics can penetrate. In 2018, George Higginbotham, a senior congressional affairs specialist at the DOJ, pleaded guilty to participating in a 2017 scheme by the CCP to illegally remove its most feared dissident, Miles Guo, from the United States.

According to court records, Higginbotham’s plea says that a man named Pras Michel, listed in the documents as “co-conspirator A,” agreed to pay former Republican National Committee fundraiser Elliott Broidy “and others” to use their political connections. This pay-to-play scheme revolved around lobbying U.S. government officials to have Guo deported back to China.

Higginbotham met with the CCP’s ambassador to the United States, Cui Tiankai, and told him that U.S. officials “were working on” the deportation request and would soon have new information “on the logistics of returning” Guo.

Prosecutors said that Michel told Higginbotham that turning on his country and attempting to remove Guo from the United States would pay very handsomely. Higginbotham’s plea says that between May and September 2017, “tens of millions of dollars” were transferred in relation to this scheme. All of these illegal and treasonous acts took place right under the nose of the Department of Justice.

The threat of CCP influence on the DOJ is a serious issue that requires immediate attention and action. National security and the integrity of the American legal system are at stake, and it is the responsibility of the U.S. government and the DOJ to take the necessary steps to protect them. It is striking that just a few simple connections would enable foreign interests, especially the CCP, to strike deeply into the recesses of the DOJ and U.S. governmental structures.

The DOJ was swept up in a shocking infiltration that showcases how truly weak and vulnerable America’s intelligence agencies are to CCP infiltration. American interests are not being served when foreign influences hold more sway over federal employees than the oaths those employees took to the United States.

It is important for the DOJ and the U.S. government to take the threat of CCP influence seriously and take steps to protect the integrity of the legal system and national security. Chinese dissidents—peacefully and powerfully advocating against the CCP totalitarian government while in the United States—should not fear reprisals from CCP-linked actors within the DOJ.

It is clear that our Department of Justice is built more like a sieve than a strong and secure intelligence apparatus.