michigan couple charged with selling auto secrets to chinese carmaker

Oh man, come on. According to a federal indictment unsealed last week, a former General Motors engineer and her husband conspired to steal trade secrets about hybrid technology and use the information to make private deals with Chinese competitors: Shanshan Du, Ex-GM Worker, Allegedly Tried To Sell Hybrid Car Secrets To Chinese Companies.
Shanshan Du and Yu Qin, both of Troy, were indicted on conspiracy, fraud and other charges. They had been under scrutiny for years and were charged in 2006 with destroying documents sought by investigators, a case that was dropped while a broader probe was pursued.

The indictment says Du, who was hired at GM in 2000, purposely sought a transfer in 2003 to get access to hybrid technology and began copying documents by the end of that year.

In 2005, she copied thousands of documents, five days after getting a severance offer from the automaker, according to the indictment.

By that summer, Qin was telling people he had a deal to provide hybrid technology to Chery Automobile, a GM competitor in China, the indictment says. The couple had set up their own company, Millennium Technology International.
Chery Automobile, GM's competitor in China, denies having anything to do with the allegations, of course. Du and Qin appeared in court last week and entered not-guilty pleas. If convicted, they could face a maximum penalty of twenty years in prison. More here: Michigan Couple Charged With Selling GM Secrets to Chinese.

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