Spying-accused US woman deported from China

  • 29/04/2017
China police

China has deported a US citizen who was convicted of espionage after being held without trial for two years.

Sandy Phan-Gillis was arrested in March 2015 while about to leave mainland China for Macau.

A court on Tuesday ordered her deportation after sentencing her to three-and-a-half years in prison for espionage.

She left China on Friday from the southern city of Guangzhou and arrived in Los Angeles on the same day, her husband said in a statement.

The Chinese government has not released details of the charges against Phan-Gillis.

Her husband, Jeff Gillis, said China had accused Phan-Gillis of visiting the country twice on spy missions in 1996 and working with the FBI to capture two Chinese spies in the US and turn them into double agents.

The deportation comes at a time of warming China-US relations after President Donald Trump met Chinese President Xi Jinping in Florida in early April.

Negotiations to secure the release Phan-Gillis intensified when Secretary of State Rex Tillerson visited Beijing in March, according to the San Francisco-based Dui Hua Foundation.