Under Barr's Justice Department leadership, the FBI opened nearly 2,500 China-related counter-intelligence cases.
The defendants are accused of trying to coerce a US resident and his family to return to China.
Indictment marks first time Chinese nationals have been charged with what officials call 'blended threat;' accused remain at large.
US attorney general’s address is the latest in a series of speeches by administration officials that have been highly critical of China.
In recent days, Justice Department has announced three criminal cases related to Chinese talent programs that aim to acquire critical technology.
Europe, which historically has had the freest press in the world and had eight of the freest press sectors in the world, notched the largest decline in its regional indicator.