Glenn Woodell, a NASA supervisor who pled guilty to violating U.S. espionage laws involving a Chinese NASA contractor was given a slap on the wrist with six months’ probation and a $250 fine, the Daily Caller News Foundation has learned.
Daniel Jobson, a Woodell colleague and fellow NASA supervisor, had his espionage charges reduced to a misdemeanor and was released without any penalty.
The lenient plea deals were quietly delivered October 26 in U.S. District Court in Newport News, Virginia. The U.S. Attorneys office did not to issue a press release about the deals and declined comment when contacted by the DCNF.
Woodell was charged under Title 18 of the nation’s espionage laws and faced a maximum penalty of one-year imprisonment and a fine of $100,000.“It’s like a traffic ticket or something for littering,” commented former U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf in an interview with the DCNF. A former Virginia Republican congressman who was chairman of a House appropriations oversight subcommittee for NASA, worked to expose Bo Jiang, the Chinese NASA contractor at the heart of the espionage case.
Woodell permitted Bo Jiang “complete and unrestricted access” to the NASA Langley Research Center in Virginia, according to the indictment filed October 20. The indictment stated that he had violated NASA’s security and IT regulations over a two-year period, from Spring 2011 to January 2013.
The Obama administration’s lenient treatment of Woodell drew immediate criticism of what is viewed as a too-permissive attitude toward foreign nationals working at government facilities containing national security assets.
FBI Director James Comey told the House Homeland Security Committee October 20 that the administration must “get smarter” about foreign citizens with green cards who “wander around” sensitive U.S. facilities like NASA.
“This is the weakest administration. They are afraid of China,” Wolf charged.
Wolf noted China’s unveiling yesterday of its first large airliner to compete with Airbus and Boeing.
“The Chinese are stealing us blind. Look at their new commercial airline,” Wolf said. “Almost everything on that airplane is from Airbus and Boeing,” he charged.
Full article: WRIST SLAP: NASA Official Fined $250 in Chinese Espionage Case (The Daily Caller)