Ex-CIA officer pleads to espionage conspiracy with China

An ex-CIA officer has pleaded guilty to conspiring with China to commit espionage.

Fifty-four-year-old Jerry Chun Shing Lee struck a plea bargain Wednesday in federal court in Alexandria to a single count of conspiring to deliver national defense information to a foreign country.

He could receive life in prison when he's sentenced in August. Federal sentencing guidelines would call for a term of 18 to 27 years depending on the final calculation.

While Lee pleaded guilty to the espionage conspiracy, the facts detailed in court left unclear whether he actually succeeded in delivering information to his Chinese handlers.

The indictment alleges Lee met in 2010 with Chinese intelligence officers who promised to take care of him for life financially if he cooperated.

Lee is a naturalized U.S. citizen from Hong Kong.