By NEIL A. LEWIS
The New York Times
July 10, 2008
WASHINGTON - Gregg W. Bergersen was a Navy veteran who liked to gamble
on occasion but spent far more time worrying about how to earn some
serious money after he left his career as an analyst at the Defense
At 51 and supporting a wife and a child in the Virginia suburbs, he
wondered how he could get himself cast in that distinctly Washington
role many Pentagon types dream of: a rewarding post-retirement perch at
one of the hundreds of military-related companies that surround the
capital and flourish off lucrative government contracts and contacts.
Mr. Bergersen believed he had found what he was seeking when he was
introduced to Tai Shen Kuo, a native of Taiwan, who had lived in New
Orleans for more than 30 years. Mr. Kuo, an entrepreneur who imported
furniture from China, was active enough in civic affairs to have been
named to a state advisory board on international trade. He told Mr.
Bergersen that he was developing a defense consulting company.
Now, Mr. Bergersen and Mr. Kuo, along with a third accomplice, are
awaiting sentencing in a federal court for their involvement in one of
many cases brought in the last year involving the illegal transfer of
information to China.
The cases have intensified the evaluation in intelligence and law
enforcement circles about the breadth of the threat from Beijing. Many
have been similar to the one involving Mr. Bergersen, in that
prosecutors describe them as carefully planned intelligence operations
run by the Chinese government intended to steal national security
secrets. Other cases, however, are less clear in their nature; some seem
to be closer to violations of commercial export laws, with the
transferred information intended to provide Chinese companies a
According to court papers and interviews, Mr. Kuo and his Chinese
handlers ran what intelligence professionals call a "false flag"
operation on Mr. Bergersen, a weapons systems analyst, making him
believe that the information he was providing was going to Taiwan, an
American ally, not Beijing.
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