What Most Media Outlets Missed From the Congressional Report About the Illegal CA Biolab

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Since news of the discovery of an illegal biolab in Reedley, California, connected to Chinese citizens, broke in July, RedState has been one of the outlets really following the story and examining links to the Chinese Communist Party. The mainstream media dismissed any curiosity or further investigation as “conspiracy theories,” immediately ruling that there was nothing to indicate that the lab was involved in any type of biological warfare or connected to the Chinese government. Even the arrest of Jia Bei Zhu, who ran the facility, barely registered with the mainstream media.


The House Select Committee on the CCP investigated, at the behest of Rep. Jim Costa (D-CA), Rep. Kevin Kiley (R-CA), and Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), all of whom represent central California, and their initial findings not only tie the lab’s operator to directly to the CCP; they reveal stunning levels of incompetence and malfeasance at the FBI, CDC, and US Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS).

The highlights, according to the committee:

  • The illegal biolab was run by a PRC citizen, Jia Bei Zhu, a wanted fugitive from Canada with a $330 million Canadian dollar judgment against him for stealing American intellectual property (which RedState reported on here).
  • Jia Bei Zhu was a top official at a PRC-state-controlled company and had links to military-civil fusion entities (as RedState reported on here).
  • The illegal biolab received millions of dollars in unexplained payments from PRC banks.
  • The illegal biolab contained thousands of samples of labeled, unlabeled, and encoded potential pathogens, including HIV, malaria, tuberculosis, and Covid.
  • The illegal biolab also contained a freezer labeled “Ebola,” which contained unlabeled, sealed silver bags consistent with how the lab stored high risk biological materials. 
  • The biolab contained nearly a thousand transgenic mice, genetically engineered to mimic the human immune system. 
  • After local officials who discovered the lab sought help from the CDC and others, the CDC refused to test any of the samples – so we don’t truly know what all was stored there.

What the committee didn’t list as highlights were the inexcusable failures of the FBI, the CDC, and USCIS, and most media outlets reporting on the issue (and many outlets did not report on it) ignored those portions of the report, too. We’ll get into those now – and if you’re on Twitter, you can also check out my thread with screenshots from the report.


FBI Attempt to Cover Up

In this report we learn that City of Reedley Code Enforcement Officer Jessalyn Harper first contacted the FBI about what she discovered at the time she discovered it in December 2022, and after two months of non-investigation the FBI closed their file because there were no “weapons of mass destruction” inside, they claimed. Apparently an entire freezer full of bags labeled “Ebola” wouldn’t constitute a WMD under whatever policies the FBI has in place.

Officer Harper referred the matter to Fresno County and to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Approximately two months later and according to local officials, the FBI informed her that it had closed its investigation because the Bureau believed that there were no weapons of mass destruction on the property.

It was only when Reedley officials contacted Rep. Costa that anything happened; Costa and his office had to twist a lot of arms in the various federal bureaucracies to get any assistance to Reedley. Zhu was eventually indicted for making false statements to FDA investigators, not FBI investigators, which tells you all you need to know about Merrick Garland’s DOJ and how much it cares about eradicating this type of foreign operation on U.S. soil. 

CDC Failures

When City of Reedley Code Enforcement Officer Jessalyn Harper first contacted the CDC, they hung up on her, according to the report. Once the CDC was finally involved, they refused to test any of the viruses. While many of the vials were labeled, some were not, and some were labeled in a code that hasn’t yet been deciphered. Under an abatement order issued in Fresno County, once officials had control of the laboratory they had a certain amount of time in which to test samples before the materials had to be destroyed. The CDC knew this and still failed to act.


CDC’s refusal to test left local officials unable to assess the danger to the City of Reedley community or inform the community about what steps, if any, it should take to protect public safety. Local officials informed the CDC about their concerns. The CDC continued to refuse to test any samples.

According to local officials, they also asked if the CDC could at least test a random sample of the pathogens. The CDC still refused. Despite their limited local budget, local officials then offered to pay the CDC for the entirety of the cost of testing these samples.

The CDC still did not and left the site.

In addition to leaving the people living around the illegal biolab site vulnerable, this failure on behalf of the CDC made it unlikely that Zhu will ever be prosecuted for anything related to those pathogens since there is no proof that the labels and the contents matched. As the Select Committee wrote:

The CDC’s refusal to test any potential pathogens with the understanding that local officials would otherwise have to destroy the samples through an abatement process makes it impossible for the Select Committee to fully assess the potential risks that this specific facility posed to the community. It is possible that there were other highly dangerous pathogens that were in the coded vials or otherwise unlabeled. Due to government failures, we simply cannot know.

In its refusal to test, the CDC likewise did not offer to connect local officials with any other federal agency or authorized lab that may be able to test the samples. Based on statements from local officials and briefings the Select Committee received from the CDC, the CDC did not contact the National Biodefense Analysis and Countermeasures Center, the government biodefense laboratory located in Fort Dietrich, Maryland that could potentially have provided greater assistance.


But let’s consider what could happen if people in the rural area around the lab got sick because of one of those pathogens. Reedley is in California’s Central Valley, which is one of the largest agricultural areas in the world. Food is shipped from the area to areas across the country and the globe. Even a relatively small outbreak could impact the food supply chain if workers are out sick, but depending on how contagious the particular disease was, it would spread quickly as truck drivers and others handling the products interacted with each other. And that’s just from an accidental release. Who knows what type of “research” was being conducted on the 1,000 transgenic (meaning, they were genetically engineered to have human-like immune systems) mice in the lab.

The mice on the right are clearly dead; investigators found evidence of cannibalism among the mice and hundreds of dead mice in the facility. It’s obvious some type of heinous experiments were being conducted.

Does USCIS Even Check Fingerprints?

And then, we get to our immigration system. As we reported more than a month ago, Jia Bei Zhu entered the United States seven times from 2003 through 2008, and his fingerprints were captured every time. Then when he came to the United States as Qiang (David) He – after he was a fugitive in Canada – he had fake documents identifying him by that new name which he used to obtain employment authorization documents from USCIS. He was fingerprinted at least one time that we know of (in 2021), but either those fingerprints were not run against a database or someone looked the other way.

The fact that a fugitive who stole $330 million (Canadian) of intellectual property from American companies could get into this country legally and with a valid work permit even though we have his fingerprints matching an entirely different identity shows that there’s a big problem at USCIS. That’s leaving the fact that this person was able to import huge pieces of equipment from China and obtain extremely dangerous pathogens without anyone being the wiser.


CCP Ties Documented

Despite talk of any ties between the Chinese Communist Party and Zhu being dismissed as “conspiracy theories,” the Select Committee’s report clearly links Zhu and the CCP. When reading the Committee’s report it’s helpful to note that a PRC state-controlled enterprise is a CCP-controlled enterprise, and the U.S. Entity List is a list of companies that are blacklisted in the U.S.

While living in the PRC in the early 2000s, Zhu served as the Vice Chairman of a PRC state-controlled enterprise based in Xinjiang, Henan Pioneer Aide Biological Engineering Company Limited (“Pioneer Aide China”). PRC government entities exercised a controlling interest in Pioneer Aide China as  beneficial owners and shareholders through a series of passthrough joint venture companies, including Henan Investment Group Company Limited, a company involved in military-civil fusion for the PRC.

Zhu also served as Chairman of the Board and General Manager of Aide Modern Cattle Industry (China) Company Limited (“Aide Cattle China”), a company whose directors included an executive for a PRC defense firm and a company on the U.S. Entity List. Shareholders in Aide Cattle China include PRC state-controlled entities and individuals who have invested in other PRC state-controlled entities.

Zhu’s Reedley companies also received $1.3 million in unexplained wire transfers from banks in China. The business Zhu was operating in Reedley purchased black market test kits from China then re-labeled them as “Made in the USA” to sell at a massive markup. While that is illegal, it still doesn’t explain why they’d be receiving payments from China instead of wiring payments to China.

One possible explanation would be that those funds were used to purchase and store pathogens and take care of the genetically-engineered mice.


No Apparent Use For Pathogens in Reedley Lab

The scariest part of this investigation is that no federal agency has shown interest in finding out exactly what Zhu was doing with these pathogens. There is no reasonable explanation for this lab having Ebola, let alone a refrigerator or freezer full of it (if that’s indeed what was contained therein), and there’s no logical explanation for the presence of the mice either since all the company was allegedly doing was manufacturing or repackaging pregnancy and COVID-19 test kits. And, according to the Select Committee:

These materials [reviewed] showed that, aside from COVID-19 test strips, UMI was not selling any diagnostic test strips relating to any pathogens while it operated in Reedley. Moreover, there is little to no market for test kits that would test the majority of the pathogens that the Reedley Biolab appeared to contain, let alone test kits created in an unlicensed laboratory. The Select Committee did find evidence that at least one pathogen may have been tested on the mice at the Biolab, but the purpose and scope of such testing is unclear. 

The pathogen that might have been tested on the mice was not revealed by the Select Committee in this report, which is another concern.


As the elected officials involved in the investigation thus far have said, while quite a few questions have been answered in this report, many more have arisen. The Select Committee’s work will continue, and we will bring you the additional findings as we receive and evaluate them.

The full event can be viewed below.




And, you can read the entire report here.

Nov 15 2023 House Committee… by Jennifer Van Laar

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