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Inmates received $1.3 billion in covid-19 stimulus checks, including those serving life sentences

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Internal data provided by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to Representative Don Bacon (R-NE) details how President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan paid out COVID-19 stimulus checks totaling at least $1.3 billion to more than 1.1 million prison inmates.

A massive amount, nearly 163,000 people, are serving life sentences without a possibility of parole. “The American Rescue Plan was reckless in the amount of massive spending with no off-sets,” the Nebraska Republican told The Washington Free Beacon.

“Giving stimulus checks to death row inmates is a glaring example. This bill triggered the worst inflation in 41 years, costing the average family $500 a month. The poor suffer the most.”

The American Rescue plan was derived and intended to distribute payments for people earning $75,000 or less or married couples with incomes up to $150,000.

However, that did not stop “cash payments for prisoners, after Senate Democrats voted by 50-49 against an amendment proposed by Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., to block the checks from going to inmates” reports Newsmax.

The Washington Free Beacon obtained a copy of the letter, in which IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig said that his agency does not possess data on how many of those individuals with life sentences who got stimulus money may also be facing the death penalty.

Newsmax adds:

Last year, Bacon and Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., warned that the American Rescue Plan, or President Joe Biden’s nearly $2 trillion stimulus package, did not include appropriate limits.

One of the $1,400 stimulus checks went to Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, leading Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler to apologize for awarding Cotton with “two Pinocchios” over his comments on the checks.

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China

REPORT: China has vast network of covert police stations around the world

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China has a vast network of covert police stations abroad, according to a recent report by Safeguard Defenders, an NGO that focuses on human rights violations in China and other Asian countries. These police stations serve consular functions, but are also used by China to crack down on what the CCP deems “illegal” activity of Chinese nationals abroad. The police stations include at least 38 run by the Fuzhou City police, and 22 run by the Qingtian City police. Cities housing these police stations include New York, Toronto (which has three stations), London (two), Paris (three), Buenos Aires, Rio De Janeiro, and Tokyo.

Key findings of the report are below.

“Persuaded to return”

According to China, China has “persuaded to return [to China]” 230,000 Chinese nationals living aboard from April 2021 to July 2022 alone to face charges of fraud and telecommunications fraud. A Yangxia police station set up in Mozambique, for example, persuaded a Chinese national to return to China after being accused of stealing money from his employer. Chinese authorities also put pressure on the accused family to convince the accused to surrender.

Roughly 54,000 Chinese nationals were persuaded to return from northern Myanmar alone, in the first nine months of 2021. In July 2022, the government of Wenchang City warned that its citizens living in northern Myanmar must check in with their local police stations or face multiple penalties including blocking their children from attending urban schools back in China. Similarly, in February 2022, the government of Liayang City stated that Chinese “illegally staying” in northern Myanmar must return or the bank accounts of their immediate family members could be frozen.

The Nine Forbidden Countries

China has claimed that nine countries contain serious levels of fraud and telecom fraud perpetrated by Chinese nationals. Since November 2021, China has declared that Chinese citizens living in these nine countries must return to China immediately unless they have an “emergency reason” or a “strict necessity” to travel or stay in those countries. Those countries are: Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, the UAE, and Turkey. However, the report questions whether these countries are truly awash in such fraud, as most of China’s oversees police stations are in the West, and only one of the nine countries (Cambodia) has such a police station. Chinese staying in the nine forbidden countries, as well as threats to family members as stated above, creates a “guilt-by-association” atmosphere intended to repatriate the Chinese nationals.

Conclusion

According to the report, Chinese police stations abroad serve to bypass “bilateral extradition treaties or other mechanisms of judicial cooperation” to cooperate with CCP-linked NGOs which effectively “[sets] up an alternative policing and judicial system within third countries.” Instead of using international judicial cooperation, which establishes due process, the presumption of innocence, and the right to a fair trial, China uses the above “persuade-to-return” methods and transnational police stations to circumvent international law and coerce Chinese nationals to return to China for trials. These policies show the power of China’s long-arm oppression over its own subjects.

You can follow Steve Postal on Twitter @HebraicMosaic

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