A former State Department employee admitted Wednesday that investigators were misled for accepting thousands of dollars in gifts and proceeds from Chinese intelligence agencies for information sharing.
Candace Marie Claiborne, 63, pleaded guilty to a conspiracy in a federal court in Washington to cheat the United States. The indictment is punishable by a maximum of five years in prison.
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"The United States government, in exchange for cash and other gifts from foreign agents that they knew, worked for Chinese intelligence," Deputy National Prosecutor General for National Security John Demers said in a statement. "She denied information and repeatedly lied about these contacts."
Claiborne, who had a top secret security clearance, was arrested in March 201
The prosecution said that over a five-year period, Claiborne received "Chinese New Year gifts, international travel and vacations, lessons at a Chinese fashion school, a fully furnished apartment, a monthly scholarship, and numerous cash payments."
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In turn, the government said that Claiborne "had supplied copies of the US State Department's internal documents on US issues for economic strategies for visits by dignitaries between the US both countries. "
" Candace Claiborne broke public trust when she accepted gifts and money from foreign officials and then d lied to them about the State Department investigators, "said US lawyer Jessie Liu in a statement. "The United States will continue to try to hold accountable those who abuse their trust."
Claiborne is scheduled to be sentenced on July 9.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.