- The Washington Times - Monday, March 10, 2003

Two Taiwanese men have been indicted by a federal grand jury in Maryland in a suspected scheme to violate the Arms Export Control Act and an arms embargo on Iran by attempting to purchase military technology for Tehran.
En-wei Eric Chang, 28, a naturalized U.S. citizen and Taiwan resident, and David Chu, 39, also of Taiwan, were named in an indictment handed up Feb. 13 in U.S. District Court in Baltimore. They were charged with conspiring to export U.S. Munitions List items to Iran from the United States through Taiwan and other countries.
The sealed indictment, made public last week, said the men sought early-warning radar equipment, satellite images, sophisticated night-vision equipment and other military-use technology.
The indictment also said the men communicated with undercover U.S. Customs Service agents for several months via e-mail about the purchase of cavity-backed spiral antennas, which when mounted to aircraft, warn pilots when they have been detected by enemy radar or targeted by enemy fire.
"The object of the conspiracy was to enrich the defendants by shipping aircraft-, helicopter- and weapons-system parts to Iran through Taiwan and elsewhere," the indictment states.
On July 31, according to the indictment, Mr. Chu wired $6,400 to undercover agents as down payment for several "cavity-backed" spiral antennas, followed by a second wire transfer of $6,400 on Jan. 13 for the remaining balance.
Customs Service spokesman Dean Boyd said federal agents arrested Mr. Chu, who also is known as Chu Loung Hsiang, on Guam Feb. 22 as he attempted to board a plane for Taiwan. He appeared before Guam's federal district court and is awaiting removal to U.S. District Court in Baltimore for prosecution by Assistant U.S. Attorney James Warwick.
Mr. Chang remains a fugitive and is believed to be in Taiwan. Authorities said none of the equipment sought by the two men was shipped out of the United States.
The indictment states the undercover agents were supposed to deliver the cavity-backed spiral antennas on Guam and that Mr. Chu was leaving with the equipment when he was arrested.
The Arms Export Control Act prohibits export of items on the U.S. Munitions List without appropriate licenses from the State Department. The Iranian embargo prohibits the export of goods, technology and services of any kind from the United States to Iran, either directly or through intermediary countries.
Mr. Boyd said the investigation began after federal agents received information from the Defense Security Service that Mr. Chang had contacted a Maryland company in January 2002 about purchasing satellite images of Tehran for export to Iran. He said agents began the probe using an undercover Customs Service business in Maryland, Stellar International.
If convicted, the two men could receive five years in prison and fines of $250,000.
The Customs Service, under a program known as "Shield America," has been at the forefront of preventing illegal exporters, targeted foreign countries, terrorist groups and international criminal organizations from trafficking in weapons of mass destruction and engaging in financial and other transactions that violate U.S. sanctions and embargoes.
The Customs Service agents who conducted the probe have since been incorporated into the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, known as ICE. It was created March 1 when Customs, the Federal Protective Service and the Immigration and Naturalization Service were transferred to the Directorate of Border and Transportation Security in the Department of Homeland Security.

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