1. Various sketches of Yujing Zhang and judge in federal court
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West Palm Beach, Florida – 15 April 2019
2. SOUNDBITE (English) Terry Spencer, Reporter, Associated Press:
"Federal magistrate judge William Matthewman today refused bond for Yujing Zhang, saying that she was an extreme flight risk if she was allowed out while awaiting trial on charges that she illegally gained access to Mar-a-Lago and lied to Secret Service agents. "
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4. SOUNDBITE (English) Terry Spencer, Reporter, Associated Press:
"His particular concern was that when she was arrested, she was carrying 4 cell phones, a laptop, and other computer devices. He said that she told the Secret Service agents the reason why she was carrying those devices was that she was scared they would be stolen if they were left in her hotel room. But, when agents later went to her hotel room, they found more computer gear, 8-thousand dollars cash, a device that can detect hidden electronic cameras, and numerous credit and debit cards all of it just sitting unsecure. So, he said that refutes her explanation as to why she was carrying that gear. And, he said it leads him to believe she was there for some nefarious purpose."
A federal judge denied bail Monday for a Chinese woman charged with lying to illegally enter President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago club.
The judge said her actions and statements suggest "she was up to something nefarious" and there is an "extreme risk of flight" if she were released.
Federal Magistrate Judge William Matthewman issued the ruling for 33-year-old Yujing Zhang, who pleaded not guilty Monday to charges of lying to federal agents and illegal entering of a restricted area.
Zhang faces up to five years if convicted.
Prosecutors did back away from their previous contention that Zhang was carrying a computer thumb drive containing malware, saying further tests have put that in doubt.
One of Zhang's public defenders, Kristy Militello, told Matthewman she believes that Zhang, who works as a business consultant, was confused by the agents' questions and they misunderstood her when they say she said she was a member.
No trial date for Zhang has been set. There is no indication Zhang was ever near the president, who was at his nearby golf club when she arrived.
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