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Law And Order

Prosecutor: Chinese woman arrested at Mar-a-Lago is 'extreme' flight risk, should not be allowed to make phone calls

The FBI is investigating whether the Chinese woman arrested Saturday at President Trump's private club Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, was working as a Chinese intelligence operative, people familiar with the matter told the Miami Herald.

The arrest of Yujing Zhang also revived an FBI investigation into possible Chinese spying in South Florida, the newspaper reports. Zhang was carrying a thumb drive with "malicious malware" on it when she was arrested, and has been charged with lying to a federal officer and entering restricted property.

The Miami Herald obtained an audio recording of her first appearance in court on Monday, and through a Mandarin interpreter, Zhang told the judge she owns a $1.3 million house in China, drives a BMW, and works as an investor and consultant for a private-equity firm in Shanghai.

Prosecutor John McMillan said Zhang is an "extreme risk of flight" if released from custody, as she has no ties to the United States. He also said there are "security implications" that should keep Zhang from making any phone calls while in custody. Zhang asked several questions during the hearing, and the judge noted that she was "obviously very intelligent because your questions are excellent for a defendant in this situation."