The battle between the United States of America and technology and cellular giant Huawei has been raging on for more than a year. Finally, after many verbal and less formal threats to the company, US District Court of NY has filed an indictment against Huawei on behalf of the United States.
Accused of breaking the United States’ Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act (RICO), the filed superseding indictment against Huawei also comes along with it a charge of conspiracy to steal trade secrets.
Canadian officials arrested Huawei CFO Wanzhou Meng in Vancouver over a year ago as she was sought by the US government for extradition.
The company has remained firm that they are “not aware of any wrongdoing” in their privacy and information sharing practices. The company said it “complies with all applicable laws and regulations where it operates, including applicable export control and sanction laws and regulations of the UN, US, and EU.”
Within the press release from of the United States, the Office of Public Affairs states that
“The means and methods of the alleged misappropriation included entering into confidentiality agreements with the owners of the intellectual property,” the US Department of Justice said in a release, “and then violating the terms of the agreements by misappropriating the intellectual property for the defendants’ own commercial use.”
It also alleges that Huawei recruited employees from other companies and asked them to “misappropriate their former employers’ intellectual property.” The DoJ also said the company has used proxies, such as professors working at research institutions, as a means of obtaining technology.
While Huawei continues to deny any knowledge or action of wrongdoing, the United States is pursuing criminal action as their investigation continues.
“As part of the scheme, Huawei allegedly launched a policy instituting a bonus program to reward employees who obtained confidential information from competitors,” said the DoJ. “The policy made clear that employees who provided valuable information were to be financially rewarded”
With files from Eric Zimmer.