This morning the FBI conducted raids in three cities as part of two major investigations of suspected espionage by China.
Sensitive targets included the space shuttle, the Delta IV rocket, the B-1 bomber and the C-17 transport plane -- symbols of U.S. military and technological dominance.
Dongfung "Greg" Chung -- a former Boeing engineer -- was arrested at his Los Angeles home and charged with multiple counts of economic espionage.
"Individuals in the Chinese aviation industry began sending Chung 'tasking' letters as early as 1979," U.S. Attorney Thomas O'Brien said. "Over the years, the letters directed Chung to collect specific technological information."
Chung, a naturalized U.S. citizen from China, allegedly spied out of an an allegiance to the "motherland."
An indictment unsealed today quotes a letter from a Chinese official praising Chung: "We are all moved by your patriotism... Your spirit and encouragement is a driving force to us."
The arrest, according to U.S. intelligence officials, is the latest sign that efforts to steal U.S. technology by China and other countries is approaching Cold War levels.
"The threat is very simple," Assistant Attorney General for National Security Kenneth Wainstein said. "It's a threat to our national security and our economic position in the world."
This morning, the FBI also arrested a Defense Department analyst in Alexandria, Va., accusing him of selling to China top secret intelligence about U.S. military sales to Taiwan.
Prosecutors warn that an investigation is ongoing and that more U.S. goverment officials may be charged with spying for China.