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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Washington

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, February 28, 2019

Chinese Telecommunications Device Manufacturer and its U.S. Affiliate Arraigned on Charges of Theft of Trade Secrets, Wire Fraud, and Obstruction of Justice

Huawei Corporate Entities Enter ‘Not Guilty’ Pleas – Agreed Trial Date of March 2020

          Seattle - Huawei Device Co., Ltd. and Huawei Device USA Inc. were arraigned today on charges of theft of trade secrets conspiracy, attempted theft of trade secrets, seven counts of wire fraud, and one count of obstruction of justice.  The companies entered pleas of ‘not guilty.’  Chief U.S. District Judge Ricardo S. Martinez set trial for March 2, 2020.

          The indictment, returned by a grand jury last month, details Huawei’s efforts to steal trade secrets from Bellevue, Washington based T-Mobile USA and then obstruct justice when T-Mobile threatened to sue Huawei in U.S. District Court in Seattle.  The alleged conduct described in the indictment occurred from 2012 to 2014.

          Under the maximum sentencing provisions applicable to corporate entities, Conspiracy and Attempt to Commit Trade Secret Theft are punishable by a fine of up to $5,000,000 or three times the value of the stolen trade secret, whichever is greater.  Wire Fraud and Obstruction of Justice are punishable by a fine of up to $500,000. 

          The charges contained in the indictment are only allegations.  A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.  The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes.  If convicted of any offense, the sentencing of the defendants will be determined by the court based on the advisory Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

          The case is being investigated by the FBI.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Todd Greenberg and Thomas Woods of the Western District of Washington, with assistance from the Department of Justice’s National Security Division’s Counterintelligence and Export Control Section.

          U.S. Attorney Brian T. Moran has been recused from this matter because of legal representations he undertook before he joined the Department of Justice.  Per direction from ethics officials in the Department of Justice, First Assistant U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes will act as U.S. Attorney with respect to this matter pursuant to the authority conferred by 28 U.S.C. § 515.

Topic(s): 
Intellectual Property
Contact: 
Press contact for the U.S. Attorney’s Office is Public Affairs Officer Emily Langlie at (206) 553-4110 or Emily.Langlie@usdoj.gov.
Updated February 28, 2019