Science

Prosecutors recommend dropping charges against MIT professor

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal prosecutors are recommending dropping charges against a Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor who was accused final year of hiding work he did for the Chinese authorities whereas additionally accumulating U.S. {dollars} for his nanotechnology analysis, an individual aware of the choice mentioned Friday.

The choice within the case of Gang Chen is anticipated to be finalized by the Justice Department within the coming weeks, in response to the particular person, who was not licensed to debate the continuing case and spoke to The Associated Press on situation of anonymity.

The transfer comes because the Justice Department conducts an inner review of its investigations and prosecutions of college professors within the United States accused of concealing their ties to China. Those investigations are a part of the China Initiative, an effort launched by the Justice Department to crack down on Chinese digital espionage and commerce secret theft. The review is anticipated to be achieved shortly.

At the time of his January 2021 arrest, prosecutors accused Chen of coming into into undisclosed contracts whereas working for MIT and holding appointments with Chinese entities, together with appearing as an “overseas expert” for the Chinese authorities on the request of the People’s Republic of China Consulate Office in New York.

Prosecutors alleged that Chen did not disclose his connections to China, as is required on federal grant functions.

But federal prosecutors in Boston have moved to drop the case after new data got here to gentle, together with an interview with a high-level Department of Energy official, in response to the particular person aware of the case. The choice was reported earlier Friday by The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post.

Despite a conviction final month of a Harvard University professor on charges that he hid his ties to a Chinese-run recruitment program, different high-profile circumstances have faltered. A federal choose in September threw out all charges against a University of Tennessee professor accused of hiding his relationship with a Chinese college whereas receiving analysis grants from NASA, and the college has since provided to reinstate him.

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Follow Eric Tucker on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/etuckerAP

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