Attorney Charged With|Witness Tampering Try

     SANTA ANA, Calif. (CN) – An Irvine attorney took a $6,000 bribe to help a material witness try to abscond to China, federal prosecutors said Monday.
     Ken Zhiyi Liang, 38, was arrested Friday after accepting $6,000 from the witness, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said. He was charged with attempted witness tampering, which is punishable by up to 20 years in prison.
     The Chinese witness was under court order not to leave the country, as she was a witness in a federal case against Southern California “birthing houses,” where Chinese citizens come to have babies so they can get U.S. citizenship. Liang was her attorney until the court removed him, over his objections, on April 17, prosecutors said.
     Federal agents recorded phone calls between Liang and the woman, who was cooperating with law enforcement.
     According to an affidavit filed in Liang’s case, he provided assistance to three other Chinese witnesses who fled or tried to flee.
     Liang was to appear in L.A. Federal Court Monday afternoon.

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