Chinese woman arrested at Trump's Florida resort to remain in custody


Zhang is facing charges for lying to law enforcement and illegally entering a restricted area, and is under investigation by the FBI's Counterintelligence Division in South Florida for possible ties to Chinese intelligence services, according to the Miami Herald. But he said there is "no allegation that she is involved in any espionage".

"She tells lies to everyone she encounters", he said.

Congressional Democrats raised questions on Wednesday about security at the club, where Trump is in close and frequent contact with club members and guests.

In testimony before the court, a Secret Service agent said that Yujing Zhang was in possession of a thumb drive, or USB drive, containing a highly active form of malware which immediately began to install itself when plugged into the agent's computer.

The incident has amplified concerns that the Florida resort where Trump and his advisers spend so much time is hard to secure. Federal officials are looking into whether the incursion was part of a larger effort to gain access to the president and do potential harm. She will be held without bond until then.

The judge said he would give the defense a week to bring possible witnesses to the United States from China to bolster Zhang's argument for bail. Those protocols were followed in this case, the official said.

Zhang's defense lawyer, Robert Adler, countered that she had paid businessman Charles Lee $20,000 for admittance to Mar-a-Lago for an event.

There was $7,600 in cash and $7,500 of that was in $100 US bills.

A U.S. Secret Service agent testified at the Yujing Zhang's Monday bond hearing that a fellow agent inserted the potentially "malicious" thumb-drive she was carrying into his government computer. Adler, the public defender representing Zhang, got agent Samuel Ivanovich to admit that "the agency that protects the president largely relied on Mar-a-Lago staff to determine whether to admit her, didn't see red flags in the devices she carried, and asked no further questions of Zhang once they believed she was related to another club member with the same last name-which is extremely common in China".

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Agents say she wasn't on the membership list, but a club manager thought Zhang was a member's daughter. At that point, the receptionist alerted Ivanovich. She arrived in the USA on a flight from Shanghai to Newark, New Jersey, two days before her arrest.

Prosecutors say they found multiple electronic devices in her hotel room, including a signal detector that can seek out detect hidden cameras, another cell phone, nine USB drives and five SIM cards.

During a federal court detention hearing on Monday, U.S. prosecutor Rolando Garcia argued Zhang is a flight risk.

He said there is no recording of her saying she wanted to go to the pool or of her conversations with a resort employee who drove her in a golf cart or the receptionist who stopped her.

He said she never claimed to be a member of Mar-a-Lago and showed a real invitation, albeit in Chinese, to attend the friendship event.

There, Ivanovich said, it became clear Zhang speaks and reads English well.

There is also no indication that she personally knew Cindy Yang, a Chinese native, Republican donor and former Florida massage parlor owner who made news recently after it was learned she was promising Chinese business leaders that her consulting firm could get them access to Mar-a-Lago, where they could mingle with the president.

A former USA government expert on Chinese intelligence operations, who asked not to be named while discussing sensitive information, said investigators would want to know "why, exactly, was she there?"