US adds charges against Huawei

U.S. Brings New Charges Against Chinese Tech Giant Huawei

The new allegations add to the company's legal woes in the U.S. The superseding indictment brought by federal prosecutors in Brooklyn adds charges of racketeering conspiracy and conspiracy to steal trade secrets to an existing criminal case in that district, where the company was already charged with lying to banks about deals that violated economic sanctions against Iran.

The superseding indictment also adds a charge of conspiracy to steal trade secrets related to Huawei's "long-running practice of using fraud and deception" to purloin sophisticated technology from USA companies.

The indictment also alleged that the company sought to hide business it was doing in North Korea despite economic sanctions against Pyongyang.

It also charges that Huawei helped the Iranian government with surveillance technology used to monitor the 2009 pro-democracy protests in Tehran. One goal of the theft, the Justice Department said, was to allow Huawei to save on research and development costs.

Huawei doesn't "abide by Western business practices", Rob Spalding, a Washington-based technology and security expert at the Hudson Institute who served on the National Security Council, said in an email.

It called the racketeering accusation "nothing more than a contrived repackaging of a handful of civil allegations that are nearly 20 years old".

U.S. Brings New Charges Against Chinese Tech Giant Huawei
Huawei hit with racketeering charge in expanding US case

Huawei has been charged by the United States government with 16 counts ranging from fraud to conspiracy to launder money and steal trade secrets to racketeering conspiracy. Such acts seriously damage the United States' credibility and image, he said. Meng, the CFO, was charged with fraud past year, with the case rippling into Canada, where she is now fighting extradition to the U.S. Meng's lawyers have argued in court that their client did nothing wrong.

Huawei did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but has denied the charges previously announced. In Huawei's case, the vendor allegedly stole information including operating system source code and user manuals as a way to improve company internet routers and its antenna components for mobile phones.

In an incident that drew headlines previous year, a Huawei employee in 2012 and 2013 allegedly repeatedly tried to steal technical information about a robot from an unnamed wireless network operator, eventually going as far as making off with the robot's arm. Futurewei was added as a defendant in the latest indictment. The company allegedly used the stolen trade secrets and technology to drastically cut down its own research time and launch competing products much sooner.

Sens. Richard Burr, R-N.C., and Mark Warner, D-Va., said in a joint statement that the indictment "paints a damning portrait of an illegitimate organization that lacks any regard for the law". The company pleaded not guilty to the previous indictment last January, which charged it with defrauding banks through its alleged operations in Iran.

Huawei's methods, according to an internal memo cited in the indictment, included continually hiring away employees from the other firm and fomenting "internal turmoil".

"The Huawei Enterprise was engaged in, and its activities affected, interstate and foreign commerce", prosecutors wrote in the indictment.

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