PALM BEACH (CBSMiami) – A Chinese woman who was arrested after she talked her way into Mar-a-Lago last month has been formally indicted.
Yujing Zhang, 32, is charged with lying to a federal agent and entering restricted property without permission. Prosecutors in court have suggested Zhang could have been trying to spy, but that is not reflected in the court filing Friday.
According to the grand jury’s indictment, “when asked whether she was authorized to be at the Mar-a-Lago Club and its grounds, the defendant state she was there to attend a “United Nations Friendship Event,” when in truth and in fact, and as the defendant then and there well knew, no such event was scheduled at Mar-a-Lago and its grounds.”
On March 30th the secret service says Zhang showed up at Mar-a-Lago and first said she was going to the pool with no bathing suit.
Later she said she was there to attend a Chinese-American Event.
Agents say she had four cell phones, a laptop, external hard drive and thumb drive containing malware.
The president was golfing nearby at the time.
A secret service agent said during their investigation, the malware began to install onto an agent’s computer on its own, something that’s never happened before.
Federal prosecutors revealed that when investigators searched Zhang’s hotel room at the upscale Colony Hotel on Palm Beach, they found over $8000 in US and Chinese cash, another cell phone, a signal detector to check for hidden cameras, credit cards, nine thumb drives, and five SIM cards.
Zhang’s defense lawyer maintains that she’s not a spy and the whole incident was a misunderstanding.
Zhang is currently in jail and has a detention hearing scheduled for Monday.