STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Earlier in the week, local radio personality Shannon Lukens found a surprising package in her mailbox.

It was an unsolicited copy of The Epoch Times, a conservative news outlet with ties to a cult-like Chinese spiritual group called Falun Gong, whose leader has claimed he can levitate and perform healing miracles. Since President Donald Trump took office in 2016, the New York-based nonprofit newspaper has seen immense growth in both readership and revenue, which it has pumped back into Trump’s reelection efforts.

At first glance, the newspaper appears legitimate. Its professional-grade design and high-quality photographs give it the look and feel of mainstream publications like The New York Times or The Washington Post. But a closer look into the articles and The Epoch Times itself reveals troubling misinformation and an obvious political bias.

Lukens was unsettled by the unsolicited copy of the weekly publication, so she researched it online.

“That’s when I started being skeptical,” she said.”

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