WASHINGTON – In response to the cases of Sherry Chen, Professor Xi Xiaoxing and other similar cases, Rep. Ted W. Lieu (D-Los Angeles) on Nov. 5 sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch requesting that the Department of Justice (DOJ) open a full investigation into whether race, ethnicity or national origin played a part in recent instances where Asian Americans have been wrongfully arrested and indicted for alleged espionage only to have those charges later dropped.

Rep. Ted Lieu
Rep. Ted Lieu

Specifically, Lieu, co-leads Reps. Judy Chu (D-Pasadena) and Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), and their congressional colleagues are requesting that DOJ address why there appears to be an ongoing pattern and practice of people of color being singled out by federal law enforcement and prosecutors.

The letter is co-signed by the chair and vice chair of the Democratic Caucus, the chairs of the Progressive Caucus, the chairs of the Asian Pacific American Caucus, the chair of the Hispanic Caucus, the chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, and 33 other members of the House.

In the letter, Lieu and his congressional colleagues write:

“We, therefore, reiterate the request for a full investigation by the DOJ into the cases of Ms. Chen, Dr. Xi, and other similar cases regarding whether race or ethnicity played a role. We also request that the DOJ conduct a full investigation regarding why it appears there is a pattern and practice of minorities being singled out for arrest and indictment by federal officials.

“We look forward to working with you to address these concerns and reassure the American public that our government is adequately protecting the civil rights of all Americans.”

To see the letter, click here.

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