(REUTERS) When Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng arrived in the United States in May last year he was given a fellowship at New York University, use of a Greenwich Village apartment, and a pile of gifts from supporters, including smartphones and an iPad.

But at least two of the gadgets presented to Chen as gifts may not have been quite what they seemed: They included software intended to spy on the blind dissident, according to Jerome Cohen, an NYU professor who has been Chen’s mentor, and another source familiar with the episode.

Like nearly everything surrounding Chen these days, the existence of the spyware is in dispute, and only adds to the public recriminations there have been between NYU and Chen’s supporters over events surrounding the end of his fellowship.
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