2 accused of trying to export weapons machinery to N. Korea
By The Associated Press
Published: Monday, May 6, 2013, 8:21 p.m.
CHICAGO — A Taiwanese businessman long suspected of ties to North Korea and his Illinois-based son have been charged in Chicago with seeking to bypass a U.S. ban on the export of weapons machinery to the hard-line communist nation, federal prosecutors announced Monday.
Hsien Tai Tsai, 67, and his 36-year-old son, Yueh-Hsun Tsai, are charged with one count each of conspiracy to defraud the United States in its enforcement of laws prohibiting the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, a statement from the U.S. Attorney's Office in Chicago said.
The statement suggests a wider investigation.
Federal agents have been investigating the Tsais and a network of companies on suspicion of trying to export goods and machinery from the United States “that could be used to produce weapons of mass destruction,” it said.
The father, who lives in Taiwan, was arrested on Wednesday in Tallinn, the capital of the Baltic Sea-coast nation of Estonia. The statement from prosecutors doesn't speculate about why Hsien Tsai was in Estonia, though it says U.S. authorities are seeking his extradition. The son, a legal U.S. resident, was arrested on the same day last week at his home in suburban Glenview, just outside Chicago, according to prosecutors.
North Korea, under the leadership of Kim Jong Un, is being sanctioned over its nuclear and weapons-development programs. The federal complaint released Monday doesn't offer details about which weapons systems the machinery could have benefited.
The elder Tsai, who also goes by Alex Tsai, fell under suspicion of U.S. authorities at least as far back as 2008, when he was convicted in Taiwan of forging shipping invoices and illegally shipping restricted materials to North Korea, the Department of Treasury said in press release at the time.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Deal reached in Ukraine crisis talks, but U.S. remains wary of Russia’s end game
- Obama’s budget plan wildly off, CBO says
- Another arrest made in abduction of N.C. prosecutor’s father
- Husband accused in slaying ate pot candy, police say
- Scientists achieve cloning advance for use in treating diseases
- Reid calls Nevada rancher’s supporters ‘terrorists’ over armed confrontation
- National Portrait Gallery features abstract expressionism of familiar faces
- Clinton donor pleads guilty in illegal campaign contributions
- Chelsea Clinton expecting first child
- GAO finds just 1 percent of large partnerships audited by IRS
- Obamacare estimates beaten by 1M