A professor accused of stealing technology for Huawei Technologies Co. pleaded guilty Friday to lying to federal agents, ending a chapter in the Justi
A professor accused of stealing technology for Huawei Technologies Co. pleaded guilty Friday to lying to federal agents, ending a chapter in the Justice Department’s investigation into both the giant Chinese firm and allegedly illegal actions by China-linked academics in the U.S.
Last fall, federal prosecutors in Brooklyn charged the professor, Bo Mao, with conspiring to commit wire fraud, accusing him of using his position as an academic researcher at University of Texas-Arlington to secretly advance Huawei’s technology. As part of the plea, that count will be dismissed.
Mr. Mao admitted to lying to federal agents about his knowledge of unique technology at the Texas university. He will be sentenced to time served plus supervised release, according to the agreement discussed in court. Mr. Mao has spent a week in jail.
A Huawei spokesman declined to comment on Mr. Mao’s plea. The spokesman has previously said that charges against the firm are unfounded and unfair.
Mr. Mao’s plea comes at the same time that Huawei’s Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou, who was arrested in Canada two years ago, is in talks with the Justice Department over a potential deal that would allow her to return home to China in exchange for admitting to some wrongdoing, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday. Ms. Meng has been fighting extradition to the U.S. over criminal charges that have strained Beijing’s relations with the U.S. and Canada.