Federal judge in Va. reduces prison term by two-thirds for New Orleans man who spied for China

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A judge has sharply reduced the prison term of a former New Orleans furniture salesman convicted of helping China obtain secret U.S. military information.

At a hearing Friday in Alexandria, Judge Leonie (LAY-uh-nee) Brinkema cut the prison sentence for convicted spy Tai Shen Kuo from nearly 16 years to just five years.

That was even better than what defense lawyers sought. They had asked to reduce Kuo's term to six years.

Prosecutors agreed that Kuo deserved a reduced term because of his cooperation, but the judge's decision cut several more years off Kuo's prison time than the government recommended.

Brinkema said she was motivated partly by the fact that the information Kuo delivered to Beijing was not significantly harmful to national security.