Temple professor, once accused of spying for China, sues FBI agents
Two years after the Justice Department labeled him a Chinese spy only to abruptly withdraw that claim without explanation or apology, Temple University physics professor Xiaoxing Xi is suing the FBI agents who built the case against him.
In a suit filed Wednesday in federal court in Philadelphia, Xi alleges that U.S. counterintelligence investigators targeted him because of his ethnicity and willfully misinterpreted evidence to fit a false narrative that he stole secrets from a U.S. company.
His claims are likely to restoke debate about recent high-profile prosecutions of Chinese American scientists, which some critics have likened to the Cold War Red scares, and bring to a head Xi’s icy standoff with agents and prosecutors in Philadelphia, who have repeatedly expressed reservations about absolving him.
They have never explained their decision in 2015 to drop their case before trial or discussed the evidence that prompted them to charge him.