Friday, March 1, 2013

Singapore: Kỹ sư Mỹ bị điệp viên TQ giết?

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Theo Nghi Ngờ Của Ba Mẹ Anh Shane Todd Về Các Chứng Cớ Trên Xác Và Trong Máy Điện Toán


SINGAPORE/WASHINGTON (VB) -- Một kỹ sư Hoa Kỳ sang Singapore làm việc, và cái chết của ông đang bị nghi ngờ là do điệp viên Trung Quốc ám sát khi thấy có thể lộ khi thất bại trong việc móc nối ông chuyển kỹ thuật tối tân về radar cho nhà nước Bắc Kinh.

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Báo USA Today hôm 28-2-2013 kể rằng, những hồ sơ trong đĩa cứng điện toán của  Shane Todd có một kế hoạch chia sẻ với một công ty Trung Quốc các thiết bị tối tân có thể tăng tín hiệu radar quân sự và thiết bị gây nhiễu sóng.


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Todd đã lo  ngại rằng công ty của anh tại Singapore đang lợi dụng anh để giúp TQ nắm kỹ thuật nhạy cảm và sẽ gây hại cho an ninh quốc gia Hoa Kỳ.

Anh nói thế với nhiều người bạn, và hài lòng vì tìm được việc làm khác ở Hoa Kỳ, theo lời mẹ anh là bà Mary Todd.


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Nhưng 2 ngày sau khi anh hoàn tất việc làm và tháng 6-2012 và sau tiệc chia tay với bạn hữu, bạn gái của anh khám phá anh đã chết, xác lủng lẳng treo ở cửa phòng tắm.

Rick, cha của Todd, một phi công dân sự từng bay cho quân đội Mỹ, nói rằng ông tin đó là ám sát.

Gia đình Todd đang yêu cầu chính phủ Mỹ điều tra vụ mà họ nghi là gián điệp TQ ám sát công dân Mỹ để bưng bít vụ móc nối con ông làm gián điệp thất bại.


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Thứ Sáu này, gia đình Todd sẽ gặp Thượng Nghị Sĩ Dân Chủ Max Baucus (Dân Chủ, Montana) tại Washington để xin quốc hội điều tra.

Shane Todd thời đi học từng là một võ sĩ đấu vật xuất sắc và cũng giỏi nổi tiếng  về khoa học. Anh tốt nghiệp năm 2005 bằng kỹ sư thiết kế điện từ University of Florida, rồi học lên, lấy xong Tiến Sĩ ở UC Santa Barbara.

Năm 2010, anh chọn 1 việc làm ở Singapore vì muốn phiêu lưu.

Anh làm ở công ty Institute of Microelectronics (IME), một viện nghiên cứu của chính phủ Singapore, nghiên cứu về chất bán dẫn mới.

Nhưng cuôc điều tra của báo Financial Times nói rằng công trình của Todd có ứng dụng mà TQ đang muốn tìm, vì cí thể gây rối làn sóng radar kẻ địch và nhiễu sóng viễn thông.

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Ba mẹ anh tìm thấy trong đĩa cứng máy điện toán của anh trong căn chung cư Singapore một bản sơ thảo hợp đồng cho IME chia sẻ kham1 phá của Todd với công ty viễn thông Huawei cuả TQ, theo lời Colin Humphreys.

Công ty Huawei được biết là hoạt động cho Sở Tình Báo Trung Quốc.

Dân biểu Mike Rogers, chủ tịch Ủy Ban Tình Báo Hạ Viện, nói rằng Huawei có liên hệ với Sở Tình báo và cả Sở Quân Báo TQ, và là “một đe dọa nghiêmt rọng” cho an ninh Hoa Kỳ.

Chất bán dẫn mà Todd nghiên cứu đươc tin là vượt xa chất silicon và có thể sử dụng để tăng tốc truyền thông sóng điện thoaị di động và làm gây nhiễu radar và viên thông quân địch.


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Todd đã thông báo nghỉ việc trước 60 ngày, nhưng IME xin anh làm thêm 60 ngày để hoàn tất việc nghiên cứu. Mẹ anh nói, anh đồng ý.

Mary Todd nói, rằng con bà kể là “đi tới Singapore là sai lầm lớn nhất đời con... Đó là cuôc nói chuyện giữa hai mẹ con trước khi con tôi chết.”

Cảnh sát Singapore mô tả hiện trường anh chết không đúng, và, ba mẹ anh kể, xác của Todd có dấu hiệu vùng vẫy dữ dội và giảo nghiệm viên nói là chết vì bị xiết cổ.

Chứng cớ trong máy điện toán của anh trong chung cư cho thấy có chứng cớ từ máy của anh đã chuyển một hồ sơ kỹ thuật quân sự cho một công ty TQ đươc in là liên hệ tới tình báo TQ.



Intrigue surrounds American's death in Singapore


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Documents on his computer hard drive included a plan to share with a Chinese company high-powered equipment that could boost military radar signals and jamming devices. Singapore's probe is ongoing.

Shane Todd worried that his employers in Singapore were using him to help China get its hands on sensitive technologies that could harm U.S. national security.
He said so to many folks, and was elated to have found another job back home, said his mother, Mary Todd. But two days after his final day of work in June and a going-away party with colleagues, his girlfriend found him dead, hanging from his bathroom door.
"We believe he was murdered," said Todd's father, Rick, an airline pilot who once flew for the U.S. military.
The Todd family has been pressing the U.S. government to look into what they say is a case of espionage and faked suicide to cover up their son's discovery that he may have been used to help China spy on his country. The circumstances of the death make no sense, they say, and the Singapore authorities have not been cooperative enough.
They have made little headway with U.S. authorities but on Friday the Todd family will meet Montana Democrat Sen. Max Baucus in Washington to make their case.
"We want a congressional investigation. We want to know how bad the damage is if" the technology his son was working with reached China, Rick Todd said.
Baucus said the U.S. government has not done enough to answer the Todds' questions, and that he doesn't know yet whether enough pressure has been put on authorities in Singapore to allow the FBI to assist in the investigation.
"I'm going make sure they do," Baucus told USA TODAY. "I'm going to find out what happened."
Shane Todd's family lived in California and Florida before moving to Montana. His dad had been a Navy pilot before becoming a commercial airline pilot.
Shane Todd was a wrestling standout and adept in his science classes. He graduated in 2005 with a degree in electrical engineering from the University of Florida, where he had many friends, his family said. He received his doctorate at the University of California-Santa Barbara. In 2010, he chose a job in Singapore because he was looking for adventure, he told his parents.
He went to work at the Institute of Microelectronics, a Singaporean government research institution, to work on cutting-edge technology involving powerful semiconductors. But an investigation by the Financial Times magazine found the technology has other applications desired by China, applications that can be used to disrupt enemy radar and communications.
Documents on a hard drive his parents found in his Singapore apartment included a draft agreement for IME to share what Todd was working on with Chinese telecommunications company Huawei, says Colin Humphreys, a pioneer in the emerging field of gallium nitride semiconductors. Huawei is known to U.S. intelligence agencies. Rep. Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, told CBS'60 Minutes in October that the company has ties to China's military and intelligence services and is "a serious threat" to U.S. national security.
Humphreys, director of the University of Cambridge Center for Gallium Nitride, analyzed documents retrieved from Todd's hard drive at the request of the Financial Times. Speaking to USA TODAY, Humphreys said the documents show that Todd traveled for IME to the United States to be trained on equipment used to produce a powerful new class of semiconductors that outperform silicon and can be used to greatly boost the transmissions of cellphone towers, military radars and radar jamming devices.
Gallium nitride is most commonly used in LED lighting, to produce high-intensity light without much heat or energy use. The material is also used on wafers, similar to silicon chips in a computer, to power various electronic devices but with much greater efficiency and intensity. Todd was involved in cutting-edge research on using GaN wafers that were 8 inches in diameter and can be loaded with electronic devices. They are of the type used in the most advanced commercial and military land-based and airborne transmission equipment, Humphreys said.
The technology is "state of the art and developing and not many places in the world are at this point," he said.
The New Jersey-based company, Veeco, also gave Todd recipes for creating gallium nitride wafers to certain specifications, and planned to ship equipment to IME so it could produce gallium nitride wafers in Singapore, Humphreys said. Singapore is not restricted from receiving such "dual-use" technology, but China is, according to theFinancial Times.
Huawei has denied "any cooperation" with IME on gallium nitride, and IME issued a statement denying that Todd was involved in classified work or anything connected to Huawei.
Mary Todd, however, told USA TODAY that the company's statement is at odds with what her son said to her in the months before his death. After returning to Singapore from his training with Veeco in early 2012, a new development caused him to become extremely anxious, she said.
"He told us he was meeting with a Chinese company that spoke in English to him and Madarin (Chinese) to the group," Mary Todd said. "He said 'I think I'm being asked to do things that compromise U.S. security and I'm very uncomfortable.'"
Mary Todd said from then on she and her son spoke every week. In conversations that lasted an hour or more, Shane's unease seemed to increase, she said.
"He said he'd been threatened, but he was very nebulous about it," Mary Todd said.
Todd was afraid he wouldn't find another job if he left before his contract was up. When he gave 60 days' notice, IME asked him to stay another 60 days to complete what he was working on. Todd agreed, his mother said.
"He said coming to Singapore was the worst mistake of his life," Mary Todd said. "He said he was extremely naïve. This was every conversation we had with him preceding his death."
Mary Todd asked her church to pray for her son, even though she thought it "sounded so far-fetched" that he was in real danger. "He was getting ready to come home. He had a ticket to come home."
On his last day of work, Shane Todd went out with friends to celebrate. It was June 22. Two days later, Mary Todd got a phone call that shattered her life. Shane's girlfriend called, hysterical, to say she found Shane dead. Police said it appeared Shane had killed himself.
Todd's parents were stunned, but their shock turned to confusion and anger after they traveled to Singapore.
The scene of his death didn't match the description police provided. Todd's body bore marks that an independent medical examiner later said looked as if he'd been in a fight and died by a garroting, or strangling. And evidence on a computer hard drive found in his apartment shows the work he was doing may indeed have been an illegal transfer of military-grade technology to a Chinese company that is known to have ties to China's military and intelligence services, the family said.
Despite the allegations, most U.S. government officials won't talk about the case.
The State Department declined to comment. Staffers for Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., helped arrange a meeting between the Todds and the U.S. ambassador to Singapore, according to Tester's spokesman, Dan Malessa.
Baucus has alerted top officials at the White House to the case and instructed staffers from the Senate Finance Committee, which he chairs, to raise the issue in face-to-face meetings with U.S. Embassy staffers and Singaporean officials, according to his office.
The family needs answers and there are national security concerns, Baucus told USA TODAY. "I will do everything in my power to help them get the answers they deserve," Baucus said.
Mary Todd said the FBI met with her and her husband once, in Singapore, "and we never heard from them again."
The FBI said it is talking to Singaporean authorities about assisting in the case.
The allegations of espionage and murder come as new developments arise over international spying. U.S. cybersecurity firm Mandiant issued a report in early February alleging widespread industrial espionage by the Chinese military against commercial entities across the United States. The Mandiant report is relevant to Shane Todd's case because it shows that "there is no clear line in China between commercial entities and China's military and government," said China expert Dean Cheng of the Heritage Foundation, a Washington think tank.
When Mary and Rick Todd arrived in Singapore on June 26, a police detective said their son hung himself with a wide strap from a computer bag, which he'd attached to a rope tied to the toilet and strung through a pulley he had bolted to the wall, Mary Todd said. The detective also read them an apologetic suicide note he said was found on Shane Todd's computer. The note started out thanking IME for the opportunity it offered and continued with apologies to the company and his family. She recalled thinking of the distinct tone of the letter that "it was so Asian."
"Then he gave this pathetic list of memories he had with our family that made no sense whatsoever," Mary Todd said. She handed the letter back to the detective and said her son "may have killed himself, but he didn't write this note."
The Todds' suspicions grew when they went to their son's apartment. There was no pulley and no bolts and no bolt holes, as the police report claimed. The toilet was not where the detective said it would be. There were clothes in the washing machine and piled on the couch in preparation to be packed. Furniture was tagged as if for sale. The apartment looked like someone was getting ready for a move to a new life, not end it all.
Edward Adelstein, chief pathologist at the Harry S. Truman Veterans Hospital in Columbia, Mich., and deputy medical examiner for Michigan's Boone and Callaway counties, disagreed with the preliminary official report that Shane Todd's death was a suicide. Adelstein noted thin marks on Shane Todd's throat, bruises on his forehead, neck and hands, and the normal weight of his lungs. Shane Todd died quickly and not without a struggle, Adelstein said.
Bruising on Todd's hands, neck and forehead were signs of a struggle, he said.
"Perhaps the most important information is that the deceased did not have a history indicating that he was considering taking his life, while there is significant history that he felt his life was being threatened," Adelstein wrote.
Rick Todd says he's not surprised his son tried to fight back.
"Shane was a very tough individual," he said. "He wrestled two years. He was extremely strong. He had a bruise on his forehead. He obviously was able to head-butt somebody."


Oren Dorell, USA TODAY
February 28, 2013



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