Arizona Federal Judge Sentences Chinese National For Conspiring To Export Military Secrets

Published: Friday, October 18, 2019 - 11:18am
Updated: Friday, October 18, 2019 - 11:42am

Judge Diane J. Humetewa with the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona sentenced a Chinese national to 40 months in prison for conspiring to steal military secrets for the People's Republic of China. 

Tao Li, 39, pleaded guilty to using multiple aliases to gain access to private companies, where he tried to obtain radiation- and heat-hardened equipment designed for the military and aerospace industries. He then attempted to export these to China. 

“Li attempted to procure highly sensitive U.S. military technology in violation of our export control laws,” said Assistant Attorney General John C. Demers.  “We don’t take these crimes lightly and we will continue to pursue them.”

Typically, exporting military technology requires several permits from several different agencies — but China is blacklisted from almost all military exports. 

After Li gets out of prison more than three years from now, he’ll serve three years of supervised release. 

The case was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Arizona District.

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