LA County Sheriff Alex Villanueva has notified the LA County Board of Supervisors that LASD will not work with a China-linked genetics firm hired by the county to conduct Covid-19 testing and registration, after the FBI shared "very concerning information" about Fulgent Genetics Corporation - which was awarded a no-bid contract for the work.
"This letter is to inform you the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department (Department) will not participate in COVID-19 registering or testing with Fulgent Genetics Corporation (Fulgent), due to the fact the DNA data obtained is not guaranteed to be safe and secure from foreign governments and "will likely be shared with the Republic of China,"" wrote Sheriff Alex Villanueva in a Monday letter.
Villanueva writes that on Nov. 24 he was contacted by the FBI's Weapons of Mass Destruction Coordinator, who shared "very concerning information" about Fulgent.
"I was shocked to learn Fulgent had strong ties with BGl2, WuXi3, and Huawei Technology 4 , all of which are linked to the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, the Peoples Republic of China (PRC) State Council and are under the control of the PRC." the letter continues. "I was even more shocked to learn Fulgent made no attempt to disguise the fact they willuse the genetic information obtained in future studies."
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 then blasted officials over how Fulgent was hired in the first place, writing "I am deeply concerned as to the vetting process which either failed to discover this, or
discovered it, but chose to ignore it. A simple internet search would have uncovered all
of the above facts."
"Entering into a no-bid contract with Fulgent Genetics and allowing them to have the DNA data obtained from mandatory COVID-19 testing, for unknown purposes, has shattered all confidence my personnel have in this entire process under the County mandate. Many personnel have long suspected this information was being used in an unnecessary manner due to a rushed mandate that we now know will have long-term unintended consequences that will not be fully known for some time.
The FBI felt strongly enough regarding Fulgent being used to test County personnel that they held an emergency briefing to disclose their concerns." -LA County Sheriff Alex Villanueva
According to FoxLA's Bill Melugin, "multiple L.A. County employees" have contacted him in recent weeks "furious" about Fulgent's sharing of medical information.
On August 4th, the L.A. County Board of Supervisors issued an executive order mandating all County employees provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19, or face potential termination. L.A. County awarded a no-bid contract to Fulgent to provide testing/registration services.— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) November 30, 2021
Fulgent Genetics was also awarded a contract to provide COVID-19 testing for New York City public schools through the 2021 school year. https://t.co/h1N8en0bMc— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) November 30, 2021