We know Huawei is blocked in the United States for several reasons but this is the first time the top Chinese OEM is being hit with official charges of sanctions violations, wire fraud, obstruction of justice, and theft of trade secrets among others. The DOJ has released official news about a Chinese telecommunications device manufacturer and its US affiliate being indicted with financial fraud. All the information mentioned aren’t new to us but it’s only now the Department of Justice has made it public.
Huawei has been charged with 13 counts of fraud and trade secrets theft among others. Also charged are Huawei Device USA, Skycom Tech (Iranian subsidiary), and Huawei CFO Wanzhou Meng. The Western District of Washington State presented the charges against the companies for different cases of wire fraud, trade secrets conspiracy, attempted theft of trade secrets, and obstruction of justice.
Apparently, Huawei has been found to be trying to steal trade secrets from T-Mobile USA. When T-Mobile sued Huawei, the latter tried to obstruct justice. This was an old case from 2012 to 2014 where Huawei was also discovered to be encouraging employees to steal information from other companies with offers of bonuses.
The DOJ also said Huawei and its CFO (Meng) engaged in a scheme that deceived the US government and many global financial institutions. Huawei is said to be involved with Skycom but denied being affiliated with it.
Huawei lied to the US for its false claims. The misrepresentations could have caused US banks some trouble with criminal and civil penalties. There were transactions that violated US regulations and law. There have been misrepresentations as claimed by the US DOJ.
First Assistant U.S. Attorney of the Western District of Washington Annette L. Hayes said:
“This indictment shines a bright light on Huawei’s flagrant abuse of the law – especially its efforts to steal valuable intellectual property from T-Mobile to gain unfair advantage in the global marketplace. We look forward to presenting the evidence of Huawei’s crimes in a court of law, and proving our case beyond a reasonable doubt. Fair competition and respect for the rule of law is essential to the functioning of our international economic system.”
There is no ruling on the charges yet. Huawei will need to respond to the indictment and prove innocence.