News / USA

Man Charged With Arson at Chinese Consulate in US

FILE - Two men look at the damage to the entrance of the Chinese Consulate in San Francisco on Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014.
FILE - Two men look at the damage to the entrance of the Chinese Consulate in San Francisco on Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014.
VOA News
U.S. prosecutors have charged a man in connection with a fire at the Chinese consulate in San Francisco last week.
 
Yan Feng turned himself in to local police Friday, two days after the consulate in San Francisco sustained fire and smoke damage.
 
The 39-year-old California resident was charged Monday with causing damage to property of a foreign government and arson.
 
FBI special agent David Johnson said Feng's motives are not yet clear, but also said that there are no obvious political motivations.
 
"We investigated this incident as a criminal matter and there are no indications at this time to suggest that it was motivated by terrorism, politics, or civil rights issues," said Johnson.
 
An FBI affidavit said Feng told investigators he targeted the consulate because "all the voices he had been hearing were in Chinese and the Chinese consulate had to be involved." It gave no further explanation.
 
Feng is a permanent resident of the U.S., though the FBI has not disclosed his birthplace.
 
Though no one was hurt and there was no major damage, many in China reacted angrily to the New Year's Day blaze.
 
Chinese state media have blamed the fire on lax U.S. security and said it is proof of widespread anti-China sentiment.
 
There has been no immediate comment from Chinese authorities on the charges against Feng.

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