Illegal Chinese fundraiser for the Clintons made secret tape in ‘Chinagate’ scandal …
because he feared being ASSASSINATED over what he knew – and used it to reveal Democrats’ bid to silence him
A Chinese-American businessman at the center of a Clinton campaign finance scandal secretly filmed a tell-all video as an ‘insurance policy’ – because he feared being murdered.
In footage provided exclusively to DailyMail.com, Johnny Chung spills details on how he illegally funneled money from Chinese officials to Bill Clinton’s 1996 re-election bid.
The Chinese-American Clinton fundraiser recorded the ‘elaborate videotaped testimony’ while in hiding in 2000.
He smuggled it to trusted friends and family with instructions to release it to the media in the event of his untimely death because he believed he was at risk of being assassinated.
Chung is believed to still be alive and living in China.
The video was obtained by author and historian David Wead for his new book Game of Thorns, which traces Hillary Clinton’s unsuccessful 2016 campaign and the Chinese government’s long-running operation to buy political influence in Washington.
Wead provided excerpts from the film to Dailymail.com. The man with whom Chung made the tape, Bob Abernethy, a friend from his church, said it was right that it was shown.
In the never-before-released footage, Chung described how he feared for his life after he publicly admitted to funneling money from Chinese officials to President Bill Clinton’s 1996 reelection campaign.
He also claimed Democrats pressured him to stay silent about his dealings with the Clintons and said the FBI tried to enlist him in a sting against a top Chinese general at a Los Angeles airport.
The video comes amid renewed interest in foreign influence in Washington, as some members of President Donald Trump’s team have been scrutinized for their associations with Russian officials.
The video grew out of a controversy in the mid-1990s when evidence surfaced that Chinese officials were pouring hundreds of thousands into then president Bill Clinton’s reelection campaign through American straw donors.
Chung, one of the main players in the ‘Chinagate’ scandal, was accused of giving over $300,000 to the Democratic National Committee on behalf of the head of China’s military intelligence agency during Clinton’s reelection bid.
Chung cooperated with the Department of Justice during the investigation, and was sentenced to five years of probation for campaign finance violations, bank fraud and tax evasion in 1998.
According to Wead’s book Game of Thorns, Chung was persuaded to film the ‘insurance’ video by a former government official who visited him while he was in hiding and told him that his ‘odds of survival actually increased by going public.’
Chung ‘received a friendly visit from a retired government official, friendly with the FBI, who perhaps felt guilty about the treatment Chung had been given after agreeing to come forward and tell the truth,’ reported Wead.
‘And so, with assistance from the former government official, Johnny Chung produced an elaborate videotaped testimony that was secreted to friends and family to be forwarded to the media in the case of his death.’
Chung described on the tape how Democrats on the House Committee on Government Reform tried to dissuade him from testifying publicly before the committee by sending his attorney a letter telling him he could plead the Fifth Amendment.
Chung said his attorney thought the letter was ‘ludicrous’ and a veiled threat from Washington Democrats that they wanted Chung to stay quiet.
‘My attorney is a fine and good attorney in the West Coast,’ said Chung. ‘Besides, every good American attorney, they know how to take the fifth…[the Democrats] sent a package to my attorney for one purpose.’
After Chung agreed to cooperate with prosecutors on the Chinagate investigation, he feared his knowledge of the Clinton campaign finance scandal and the Chinese influence operation could make him a target for assassination.
He said he feared his knowledge of the Clinton campaign finance scandal and the Chinese influence operation could make him a target for assassination.
The FBI in Los Angeles began providing around-the-clock protection for him. But just a few days before Chung was scheduled to testify before a grand jury, the FBI headquarters in Washington called off the protection detail and told Chung he would have to make the trip alone.
In the secret videotaped statement, Chung claimed the Department of Justice dismissed his safety concerns – with one U.S. attorney telling him to ‘call 911’ if he felt threatened.
‘I called the FBI office and offered to [speak with] the US assistant attorney again on the phone,’ said Chung.
‘And he said ‘Mr. Chung your case is over. As a normal American citizen what do you do if you feel your life is in danger? You just call 911.’
The businessman ended up testifying, telling the House committee that he believed the Clintons ‘used me as much as I used them.’