Glenn Duffie Shriver

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Glenn Duffie Shriver
Glenn Duffie Shriver filmed by FBI.jpg
Born (1981-11-23) November 23, 1981 (age 36)
Henrico County, Virginia
Nationality American
Other names Du Fei

Glenn Duffie Shriver (born November 23, 1981) is an American convicted of conspiracy to spy for China.


In the short film Game of Pawns produced by the FBI, Shriver was in front of the main entrance to the East China Normal University in Shanghai.

Shriver was born in Henrico County, Virginia, near Richmond. When his parents separated in 1983, he moved with his mother to the Jenison area of Michigan.[1] He was a resident of Georgetown Township, Michigan.[2]

He attended Grand Valley State University (GVSU) in Allendale, Michigan. In 2001, he took part in a 45-day summer study program in Shanghai, China. He subsequently spent his junior year at East China Normal University, also in Shanghai. After graduating from GVSU in 2004 with a bachelor's in International Relations, Shriver returned to Shanghai to work and to study the Chinese language, in which he eventually became proficient.[3][4] He had a few acting jobs in the Chinese film industry.[1]

In about 2004 Shriver answered an ad to write a paper about U.S.–China relations with regard to Taiwan and North Korea. A Chinese woman calling herself "Amanda" praised his paper and paid him US$120. This was a type of low-key initial approach, common while recruiting intelligence operatives.[1] Amanda eventually introduced Shriver to a "Mr. Wu" and "Mr. Wang".[5] Amanda, Wu, and Wang, all operatives of the Chinese Ministry of State Security, encouraged him to apply for jobs with the United States government or law enforcement, rather than the more common approach of recruiting an existing agent.[1][6]

Soon they told him they were interested in obtaining classified material, and paid him $10,000 to take the United States Foreign Service Exam in Shanghai in 2005, though he failed to pass.[7][8] He was paid $20,000 for a second attempt at the exam in 2006 which also failed. Shriver next applied for a position as a clandestine officer with the National Clandestine Service branch of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in 2007. This time he requested and received payment of $40,000 from the Chinese. He took the money to the United States, but failed to report it, as required by law.[a][8]

Shriver enjoyed China so much that he returned there as an English teacher and then lived in South Korea, where he became the fiancée of Yumi Kim. Kim was so impressed with Shriver's love of America that she nicknamed him "Mr. Patriot."[1] In February 2010, when he was in the final stages of processing for a position with the CIA, he lied in order to conceal his involvement with Chinese intelligence operatives.[3][6] Unbeknownst to Shriver, the CIA had learned of his connections early on in the hiring process.[7][9] The CIA and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) have not subsequently disclosed how they discovered Shriver had been recruited by the Chinese government, but stated it was not through normal background investigations.[1]

Arrest and conviction[edit]

In June 2010 Shriver was arrested while trying to depart Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport for South Korea[1] and charged with five counts of "making false statements" and one count of "willfully conspiring to provide national defense information to intelligence officers of the PRC".[7][10] He was denied bail and prosecuted by Stephen M. Campbell, a United States attorney in Alexandria, Virginia.[1]

Shriver was facing up to 10 years in prison under Section 793, but the prosecutor had also threatened him with a prosecution under Section 794 which had a maximum of life imprisonment.[11] Shriver pleaded guilty in October 2010 to one count of conspiracy to commit unlawful conveyance of national defense information as part of a plea bargain[3][6] which included a full debriefing and polygraph testing.[7][8] On January 21, 2011 he was sentenced to four years in prison by judge Liam O'Grady.[11]

At the time of Shriver's arrest the case only attracted media attention in Michigan.[12]

Shriver had met with his handlers about 20 times, most often "Amanda", and taken $70,000.[7][8] Shriver said "I made a terrible decision. Somewhere along the way I got into bed with the wrong people. I cannot tell you what it’s like to carry a dark secret like this for so many years."[7] Professor Geling Shang, one of the leaders of Shriver's summer study group, had worried that Shriver had no sense of what he wanted to do with his life. Shriver stated that he had been motivated by greed. He served his sentence at the Federal Correctional Institution near Elkton, Ohio, with Kim saying she would wait for him.[1]

Wang Baodong, speaking for the Chinese embassy in Washington, said the Chinese government does not do anything to harm the interests of other countries and that the allegations against Shriver will be proven false.[6] This is the normal comment by the Chinese government in cases of foreign espionage.[13] Between March 2008 and July 2010, 44 individuals were convicted by the United States Department of Justice in 26 cases involving espionage on behalf of China.[14] According to David Wise of The Washingtonian, Shriver was the first known case in which China tried to recruit an American to set up as a mole within the CIA, although the method has been attempted by other countries.[15]

Shriver was released from federal prison in late 2013.[16]


Short film Game of Pawns

Shriver's experience was dramatized in the short film Game of Pawns, produced by the Counter-Intelligence Unit of the FBI and released online in April 2014. One of the film's goals was to warn students of dangers in China.[17] It featured the actor Joshua Murray as Shriver.[18]

Adam Taylor of The Washington Post described it as "strikingly cheesy, obviously low-budget".[19] Emily Rauhala of TIME described it as "a bit of a stinker" that "comes off as cross between a public service announcement and a parody."[20] Rauhala concluded that since the film had a "stereotypical view of China" it meant that "the people behind it, like Shriver, seem well-intentioned but unforgivably naive."[20]

Within the film the Washington, D.C. Chinatown is used as a stand-in for Shanghai.[21]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Money entering or leaving the United States with an amount over $10,000 must be reported to United States Customs.[7]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Wise, David (June 7, 2012). "Mole-in-Training: How China Tried to Infiltrate the CIA". The Washingtonian. Retrieved March 25, 2013. 
  2. ^ Tunison, John (2011-01-21). "Jenison area man who took money, allegedly intending to spy for China, sentenced to four years". MLive. Retrieved 2016-08-21. 
  3. ^ a b c "American Sentenced to 48 months in China Spy Case". Agency France Presse via Google Hosted News. January 21, 2011. Retrieved March 25, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Man Gets 4 Years in Jail for Attempt to Spy for China". CNN. January 21, 2011. Retrieved March 25, 2013. 
  5. ^ Smith, Ivan C.; West, Nigel (2012). Historical Dictionary of Chinese Intelligence. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press. p. 239. ISBN 978-0-8108-7370-4. 
  6. ^ a b c d Pelofsky, Jeremy (October 22, 2010). "American Pleads Guilty to Trying to Spy for China". Reuters. Retrieved March 25, 2013. 
  7. ^ a b c d e f g "Counter Intelligence Briefing – Glenn Duffie Shriver". Department of Energy – Hanford. Retrieved March 25, 2013. 
  8. ^ a b c d "Michigan Man Sentenced 48 Months for Attempting to Spy for the People's Republic of China". Department of Justice. January 21, 2011. Retrieved March 25, 2013. 
  9. ^ Barakat, Michael (October 22, 2010). "Glenn Shriver, Michigan Man, Pleads Guilty To Attempted Spying For China". Huffington Post. Retrieved March 25, 2013. 
  10. ^ 18 U.S.C. § 1001
  11. ^ a b Wise, David. "Mole-in-Training: How China Tried to Infiltrate the CIA." Washingtonian. June 7, 2012. Retrieved on August 6, 2016.
  12. ^ Stein, Jeff. "CIA applicant's arrest tops wave of China spy cases." Washington Post. July 20, 2010. Retrieved on August 7, 2016.
  13. ^ Mattis, Peter (November 5, 2010). "Shriver Case Highlights Traditional Chinese Espionage" (PDF). China Brief. The Jamestown Foundation. X (22). Retrieved March 25, 2013. 
  14. ^ Stein, Jeff (July 20, 2010). "CIA Applicant's Arrest Tops Wave of China Spy". The Washington Post. Retrieved March 25, 2013. 
  15. ^ Gertz, Bill (October 25, 2010). "Spy's Arrest Underscores Beijing's Bid for Agents". The Washington Times. Retrieved March 25, 2013. 
  16. ^ Makinen, Julie (May 7, 2014). "China, U.S. go tit for tat over student spying cases". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved July 3, 2015. 
  17. ^ Wallace, Christopher (May 22, 2017). "China boasts after news report it executed CIA informants". Foxnews. Retrieved May 22, 2017. 
  18. ^ "Advice for U.S. College Students Abroad Be Aware of Foreign Intelligence Threat". FBI. Retrieved April 16, 2014. 
  19. ^ Taylor, Adam. "A cheesy FBI video hopes to stop U.S. students from becoming Chinese spies." Washington Post. April 15, 2014. Retrieved on August 7, 2016.
  20. ^ a b Rauhala, Emily. "FBI Movie Warns U.S. Students Not to Spy for China." TIME. April 16, 2014. Retrieved on August 6, 2016.
  21. ^ Stein, Perry. "Chinatown Passes for Shanghai in the FBI's Eyes." Washington City Paper. April 15, 2014. Retrieved on August 6, 2016.

External links[edit]