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Chinese spy living in Orlando sentenced for illegally exporting underwater drone parts

ORLANDO, Fla. — A 55-year-old Chinese woman living in Orlando has pleaded guilty to operating on behalf of the Chinese government to illicitly ship underwater drone parts overseas, the FBI said.

Amin Yu was sentenced to 21 months in federal prison Monday on charges of acting in the U.S. as an illegal agent of a foreign government and conspiring to commit international money laundering.

Yu, while working for People’s Republic of China-controlled Harbin Engineering University, she spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on drone parts from 2002 to February 2014, the FBI said.

She illegally shipped the submersible drone parts to the PRC for use in the development of submersible vehicles, including unmanned vehicles, remote-controlled vehicles and autonomous vehicles, investigators said.

Channel 9 learned that Yu worked at the University of Central Florida from August 2008 to February 2014, most recently as an assistant in the College of Engineering and Computer Science.

A UCF spokesperson did not know why Yu left and how much access she had to government research performed at the university.

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