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Stunning moment Aussie China watcher is questioned by police

over vile false threats to 'rape and kill' a young Chinese woman - as it's revealed China's spies were really behind the email

  • China watcher Andrew Phelan arrested over fake vile email

  • Believes the Chinese Communist Party was behind the message

  • Police found the email was sent by a fake account


June 19, 2023

This is the shocking moment an Australian China watcher is questioned by police over vile threats he was falsely accused of making to 'rape and kill' a Chinese journalist - which he believes were actually crafted by China's spies.

Andrew Phelan, an entrepreneur and vocal critic of the Chinese Communist Party, was arrested by four armed police officers at his Melbourne home on 25 January this year.

They confiscated his phone, two laptops and several external drives and took him to a local police station for questioning.

He was accused of sending an email to the young female journalist, who is believed to have Chinese-Singaporean heritage, which read: 'Get back to China, b**** and if you don't I'm going to come find you and pound your yellow p****, cut your throat.

'At least then you'll bleed red, in the colour of the CCP, you b****.'

Footage of Mr Phelan's police interview shows him completely gobsmacked hearing the words supposedly written in his name.

'I would never ever, in a month of Sundays, use that kind of language to women or anybody else,' he tells the officers.

After questioning, police established that the email had been sent by a fake account purporting to be him.

'It was surreal. Incredibly confronting. It was horrible - I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy,' Mr Phelan told 60 Minutes.

Mr Phelan, who was a former Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Australia-China Council scholar, was in no doubt about who was behind the vicious message.

'I believe that this has been done under the auspices of the MSS, China's Ministry of State Security,' he said.

'I believe they are targeting Westerners who have been critical of the CCP in the public square.'

He confirmed to Daily Mail Australia his conviction that the 'fake email tactic is a new strategy deployed on dissidents and critics of the regime under the sponsorship of China’s MSS (Ministry of State Security)'.

'I don’t know who exactly was behind it but it would have been done with state sponsorship,' he said.

Mr Phelan said the confiscation of his phone and laptop came at the 'worst possible time' because his mother, who suffers from dementia and cancer, was about to return home from hospital after falling and breaking her hip.

The China watcher said the accusation was also 'particularly aggravating' because he had physically intervened multiple times to stop men harassing or bullying women on trips to Asia before.

'I advised the police to inform the complainant that I was very sorry she had been caught up in this as "collateral damage" as it were through know fault of her own,' he said.

'Even though I was the intended target in this case what’s clear is the perpetrators had zero regard for the welfare of the complainant.'

Mr Phelan has offered police his time and insight to help educate them about these nefarious tactics in the future.

60 Minutes also spoke to human rights activist Drew Pavlou who was arrested protesting outside the Chinese Embassy in London last year.

Mr Pavlou alleges the Chinese regime made a false bomb threat in his name, which left him potentially facing 12 years in prison.

For six months after his arrest received more than 40 emails threatening to kill him and his mother also suffered a campaign to have her sacked.

Human rights activist Drew Pavlou (pictured) believes the Chinese regime made a false bomb threat in his name

China is known to crack down on critics of the state

The program also heard from Australian political artist, Badiucao, who lived in China for 20 years before seeking refuge here.

He is considered an enemy of the state for his art, which often paints the Chinese Communist leader, Xi Jinping, as a tyrant.

Badiucao claims Chinese authorities have put so much pressure on local galleries he can't get his work shown in Australia and he has been forced to sever ties with family in China in order to keep them safe.

He has also suffered near-daily death threats.

'No matter how far you are in Australia, in America, in Europe, if you offend China, then you will be killed,' he told 60 Minutes.

The program also shone a light on so-called Chinese Overseas Police Service Stations, which are allegedly secret Chinese police stations operating in over 50 countries around the world.

Documents sourced from Chinese authorities suggest two secret stations are located in Australia, according to 60 Minutes.

Artist Badiucao (pictured) is considered an enemy of the state for his art, which often paints the Chinese Communist leader, Xi Jinping, as a tyrant

Australian authorities deny they are operating even though China reportedly publicises their existence.

An establishment ceremony for the alleged station in Sydney was covered by the Chinese press, but it flew under the radar in Australia.

A spokesperson from the Chinese Embassy in Australia told Nine 'there is no so-called overseas police stations'.

'The relevant institutions helped overseas Chinese who could not return to China due to the pandemic renew their driving licence and perform physical examination.

'They are not so-called police stations or police service centres at all.

'The local Chinese groups who helped provide venues for the services and the volunteers are Chinese from the local communities who are willing to help their compatriots, not Chinese police personnel.

'In light of the evolving COVID situation and relevant services now available online, the relevant service centres have been closed.'


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