California judge denies bail for researcher over China ties

This undated photo provided by the U.S. Justice Department shows Juan Tang in her China People's Liberation Army military uniform. The Justice Department on Thursday, July 23, 2020, says the Chinese consulate in San Francisco is harboring a Chinese r

A federal judge in California denied a bail request for a university researcher accused of lying about her ties to China’s military and Communist Party to gain access to the United States.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Deborah Barnes said Friday that 37-year-old Juan Tang “would have every reason to leave” the country if released on bail, The Sacramento Bee reported.

The former Chinese researcher at the University of California Davis has been held without bail at the Sacramento County Main Jail since July 23.

Tang was arrested by FBI agents when she left the Chinese consulate in San Francisco to visit a doctor, authorities said.

Tang was considered a fugitive who sought refuge for a month inside the consulate after being questioned June 20.

The U.S. Department of Justice said Tang is one of several Chinese researchers who received visas to conduct research at American universities

Tang and others falsely claimed to have no ties to China’s People’s Liberation Army-Air Force or the country's Communist Party, authorities said.

Tang’s defense attorney, Alexandra Negin, said she is not a flight risk. The FBI seized her passport in June, prompting Tang to seek help from the consulate, Negin said.