WASHINGTON — The Justice Department on Tuesday announced a series of criminal cases tracing the illegal flow of sensitive technology, including Apple’s software code for self-driving cars and materials used for missiles, to foreign adversaries like the Russia, China and Iran.
Some of the alleged thefts highlighted by the department date back several years, but US officials are now drawing attention to the collection of cases to highlight the work of a task force created this year to disrupt the transfer of goods to foreign countries.
“We are committed to doing everything we can to prevent these advanced tools from falling into the hands of adversaries who use them in ways that threaten not only our national security but democratic values everywhere,” the prosecutor said. Deputy General Matthew Olsen, who heads the National Security Division of the Justice Department.
One of the cases, unsealed Tuesday in federal court in Los Angeles, accuses a former Apple software engineer of taking proprietary data related to self-driving cars before his last day with the company in 2018, then boarding a flight from San Francisco to China. the night FBI agents were raiding his home.
Other cases revealed on Tuesday have resulted in arrests. One defendant, Liming Li, 64, was arrested earlier this month for stealing thousands of sensitive files from his California employer, including technology that could be used in the development of nuclear submarines and aircraft military, and having used them to help Chinese competitors. businesses.
Li has been in custody since his arrest. A lawyer representing him declined to comment.
PHOTOS: US announces criminal cases involving flow of technology, information to Russia, China and Iran
Additionally, two Russian nationals, Oleg Sergeyevich Patsulya and Vasilii Sergeyevich Besedin, were arrested in Arizona this month on charges of conspiring to send aircraft parts to Russian airlines.
Lawyers for the two men did not immediately return phone messages seeking comment.
The Justice Department also unsealed a separate criminal case charging a Chinese national with conspiring to pass isostatic graphite, a material that can be used in the nose of intercontinental ballistics, to Iran in violation of US sanctions.
Earlier this year, the Departments of Justice and Commerce launched the Disruptive Technology Strike Force to prevent US adversaries from acquiring sensitive technology.
Copyright © 2023 The Washington Times, LLC.