Contact: Holly Chang, Acting Executive Director
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The Committee of 100 and Partners Issue Letter to Attorney General
Expressing Concerns of Racial Profiling Towards Asian Americans
(New York, NY-September 8, 2015) –The Committee of 100 (C-100) and six national Asian Pacific American organizations have come together in calling on Attorney General Loretta Lynch to examine a growing number of criminal prosecutions which appear to have elements of racial discrimination. Co-signers of the letter collectively represent millions of Asian Americans and include the National Council of Chinese Americans (NCCA), Asian Americans Advancing Justice (AAJC), Asian Pacific Islander American Public Affairs Association (APAPA), Chinese American Citizens Alliance (CACA), National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA), and OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates.
The joint letter to Lynch’s office on September 4 expressed concern over irresponsible prosecutions and inflammatory rhetoric made by investigators and government attorneys, in addition to the appearance of a pattern of targeting ethnic Chinese in America on the basis of race and national origin. The letter supports a request made by Congressman Ted W. Lieu and 21 colleagues in the U.S. House of Representatives for the Department of Justice to investigate whether race and national origin are being used to target federal employees, including in the case of Sherry Chen, a federal employee who was suspended from her job last year based on economic espionage charges that were later dropped by prosecutors.
“The Department of Justice has a duty to protect the rights of those whom it chooses to investigate and to employ law enforcement practices free from bias,” says Herman Li, Acting Chairman of the Committee of 100.
The joint letter from C-100 and partners states:
“[We] would like to work with you and your colleagues at the Department and throughout the federal law enforcement community to find better ways to handle these sensitive cases and to enable the government to protect U.S. national interest and national security while at the same time protect the civil liberties of all Chinese Americans.”
Full text of this letter can be found below and here.
The Committee of 100 is a U.S. 501(c)(3) leadership organization of prominent Chinese Americans in business, government, academia, and the arts. For over a quarter century, the Committee has monitored issues affecting Chinese Americans and served as a high-level bridge in the U.S.-China dialogue fostering regular exchanges with the leadership of Beijing, Taipei, and Washington. In 1999, the Committee led a coalition to raise national awareness of the denial of due process in the Wen Ho Lee case of alleged espionage. C-100 leads a series of informational seminars throughout the U.S. on the complex legal environment surrounding trade secrets, economic espionage, and export controls; the next event in this series will take place on September 16, 2015 in Washington, D.C.