Think tank head who claims to have given FBI info on Hunter Biden charged with acting as an unregistered agent of China
(The Hill) – The head of a U.S. think tank who has repeatedly accused President Biden and his family of corruption has been charged with acting as an unregistered agent of China, Manhattan prosecutors announced Monday evening.
Gal Luft, co-director of the Maryland-based Institute for the Analysis of Global Security, is accused of recruiting and paying an unnamed former high-ranking U.S. government official on behalf of principals based in China in 2016, without registering as a foreign agent, which is legally required.
The former high-ranking official was an advisor to then President-elect Trump and was allegedly paid to publicly support certain policies pertaining to China, according to the 58-page, eight-count indictment unsealed Monday.
Manhattan prosecutors also allege Luft attempted to broker illicit arms deals to sell weapons to countries including Libya, the United Arab Emirates and Kenya without having a license to do so, as is legally required in the U.S.
And Luft is accused of violating Iran sanctions by setting up meetings between Iranian officials and a Chinese energy company to discuss oil deals. When interviewed by U.S. law enforcement, Luft allegedly made false statements regarding his role brokering those deals.
“As alleged, the defendant engaged in multiple schemes to evade sanctions and laws intended to protect our national security,” Christie M. Curtis, FBI acting assistant director in charge, said in the press release. “The FBI is determined to defend our nation by enforcing laws designed to promote transparency of foreign influence within the United States.”
A dual citizen of the U.S. and Israel, Luft was arrested on Feb. 17 in Cyprus, but fled after being released on bail and remains a fugitive, the Justice Department said in a press release.
In a video first published by the New York Post, Luft made bribery allegations against the Biden family and called himself “patient zero of the Biden family investigation.”
He claims in the video that he was arrested to prevent him from testifying before the House Oversight Committee on shady Biden family business dealings. He also claims he shared his allegations with FBI and DOJ officials during a March 2019 meeting, which he said they covered up.
Rep. James Comer, R-Ky., chairman of the Oversight Committee, called Luft a “very credible witness on Biden family corruption” in a tweet last week. Comer and other Republicans have heralded Luft as a whistleblower in the Hunter Biden laptop probe.
Luft faces up to 100 years in prison if convicted of all eight counts and sentenced to the maximum amount of prison time, though such a sentence is unlikely.