A professor at the University of Arkansas has been arrested on charges that he had hidden funding he was receiving from China in a program that allegedly was used by China to steal technology.
Another professor has pleaded guilty to the same thing.
The New York Times reported:
“Simon Ang of the University of Arkansas was arrested on Friday and charged on Monday with wire fraud. He worked for and received funding from Chinese companies and from the Thousand Talents program, which awards grants to scientists to encourage relationships with the Chinese government, and he warned an associate to keep his affiliation with the program quiet.”
The DOJ released a statement on Ang:
“The complaint charges that Ang had close ties with the Chinese government and Chinese companies, and failed to disclose those ties when required to do so in order to receive grant money from NASA. These materially false representations to NASA and the University of Arkansas resulted in numerous wires to be sent and received that facilitated Ang’s scheme to defraud.”
Ang hid the money from China, which allowed him to receive grants from the federal government that bans such grants to universities that receive funding from China.
The New York Times added that also on Friday “Dr. Xiao-Jiang Li, a former professor at Emory University in Atlanta, pleaded guilty … to a felony charge of filing a false tax return that omitted about $500,000 that he received from the Thousand Talents program. He was sentenced to a year of probation and ordered to pay $35,089 in restitution.”
In January, federal law enforcement officials arrested a top Harvard scientist, Dr. Charles Lieber, for allegedly lying to the U.S. government about his involvement in the Thousand Talents program.
The New York Times reported that Lieber “was named a University Professor, Harvard’s highest faculty rank, one of only 26 professors to hold that status,” and that “he earned the National Institutes of Health Director’s Pioneer Award for inventing syringe-injectable mesh electronics that can integrate with the brain” in 2017.
“According to court documents, since 2008, Dr. Lieber who has served as the Principal Investigator of the Lieber Research Group at Harvard University, which specialized in the area of nanoscience, has received more than $15,000,000 in grant funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Department of Defense (DOD),” The Department of Justice said in a statement. “These grants require the disclosure of significant foreign financial conflicts of interest, including financial support from foreign governments or foreign entities.”