Feds: Chinese spy tried to steal US aviation trade secrets

NEW YORK (AP) — The Justice Department says a Chinese spy who attempted to steal trade secrets from multiple U.S. aviation and aerospace companies has been charged.

Yanjun Xu was charged Wednesday with conspiring and attempting to commit economic espionage and theft of trade secrets.

Prosecutors allege that beginning in December 2013, Xu recruited experts who worked at aviation companies, including GE Aviation. They say Xu and others would pay stipends for the experts to travel to China under the guise of delivering a university presentation.

Court papers say Xu and other operatives discussed how they would obtain “highly sensitive information” from the experts.

Xu was arrested in Belgium in April and is scheduled to appear in an Ohio court Wednesday.

A GE Aviation spokesman said early detection made the impact “minimal” on the General Electric Co. division based in Cincinnati.

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