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Former Ford Engineer Charged With Stealing Trade Secrets

Posted in auto industry, Car Tech, Cars, Design, Ford, Legal, Newsworthy, Scandal by Suzanne Denbow | October 16th, 2009 | Leave a Reply |

Mark Fields, president, The Americas, Ford Motor Company, introduces the 2011 Ford Super Duty to media at the 2009 State Fair of Texas in Dallas, Texas September 24, 2009.

Documents released by the federal courts today report that former Ford employee, 47-year-old Xiang Dong Yu (aka Mike Yu) of Beijing, China, has been federally indicted on charges of theft of trade secrets, attempted theft of trade secrets and unauthorized access to a protected computer. Apparently, Yu was employed as a product engineer by Ford’s China branch from 1997 through 2007 and on the eve of his resignation he allegedly downloaded copies of 4,000 classified documents detailing specifications for pending design projects. He then attempted to use the documents as leverage to gain employment with an undisclosed Chinese automotive company, though the information included in the indictment does not detail whether he was successful or not.

Yu’s detention hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, October 20th with the trail to commence at a later date. If convicted of the charges levied against him, Yu could face 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each count of theft and attempted theft of trade secrets, and unauthorized computer access could tack on another 5 years and another $250k.

Source: PR Newswire
Image Cred: Reuters Pictures

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