LA County Sheriff Alex Villanueva this week informed the Board of Supervisors in his country that his office would no longer use their coronavirus test kit provider, alleging that the company could share data from COVID-19 patients with the CCP government.
In a message reported by Fox News reporter Bill Melugin, Villanueva says he was told by the FBI’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Coordinator, who revealed “very concerning details” about Fulgent Genetics Corporation, the Temple City-founded company contracted by the county to give covid-19 tests.
NEW: The L.A. County Sheriff has notified L.A. County that LASD will not work w/ a genetics firm the County hired for mandatory COVID-19 testing/registration of County employees after he received a recent briefing from the FBI warning him about the firm’s links to China. @FoxNews pic.twitter.com/WHtFcEZlPI
— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) November 30, 2021
Villanueva said to the supervisor board he went to a November 26, 2021 briefing at an FBI Office, along with the county’s top lawyers and chief executive, with all supervisors and the leader of the Dept. of Public Health invited.
“The FBI said the purpose of this meeting was to inform County leaders about the serious risks of allowing Fulgent to do the COVID-19 testing for employees of the County,” Villanueva said.
The sheriff revealed he was “shocked to discover” that Fulgent has connections to numerous Chinese tech and genomics companies that are “related to China’s Academy of Medical Sciences, the State Council in China and are now under the control of the Chinese authorities.”
He further said that Fulgent uses genetic information gotten from COVID-19 testing patients in studies, and caused concerns that data possibly stored by Fulgent outside the United States could be used by the Chinese government.
“I am deeply worried about the vetting process which failed to find this information or found it and then ignored it. A simple search would have found all of these facts,” Villanueva said.
He said the FBI “felt strongly enough about Fulgent that they had an emergency briefing to express their concerns.”
“The Dept will stop partnering with Fulgent,” Villanueva said.
Sheila Kuehl, the L.A. County Supervisor, said to the LA Times that she was invited but couldn’t attend because she was celebrating Thanksgiving.
“From what I have heard, there was no evidence that Fulgent had any connection with the Chinese government,” she said.
On August 4, the Board of Supervisors in L.A. County mandated that all employees must give proof of vaccination against coronavirus by Oct. 1 or be terminated. Melugin said that the county gave a no-bid contract to Fulgent to give registration and testing services, and that all employees of the county, over 100,000 people, were now required to register their vaccination status with the Fulgent company.
Author: Scott Dowdy