Prosecutors recommend dropping charges against MIT professor – WDVM25 & DCW50

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal prosecutors recommend dropping charges against a Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor who was charged last year with hiding work he did for the Chinese government while raising dollars Americans for his research into nanotechnology, a person familiar with the decision said on Friday. .

The ruling in the Gang Chen case is expected to be finalized by the Justice Department in the coming weeks, according to the person, who was not authorized to discuss the ongoing case and spoke to The Associated Press undercover of anonymity.

The move comes as the Justice Department conducts an internal review of its investigations and prosecutions of university professors in the United States accused of concealing their ties to China. These investigations are part of the China Initiative, an effort launched by the Department of Justice to crack down on Chinese digital espionage and trade secret theft. The exam should be done shortly.

At the time of his arrest in January 2021, prosecutors accused Chen of entering into undisclosed contracts while working for MIT and of having meetings with Chinese entities, including acting as a “foreign expert” for the Chinese government at the request of the Consulate of the People’s Republic of China. Office in New York.

Prosecutors alleged that Chen failed to disclose his ties to China, as required by federal grant applications.

But federal prosecutors in Boston decided to drop the case after new information emerged, including an interview with a senior Department of Energy official, according to the person familiar with the matter. The decision was reported earlier Friday by the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post.

Despite the conviction last month of a Harvard University professor accused of hiding his ties to a Chinese-run recruitment program, other high-profile cases have failed. A federal judge in September dismissed all charges against a University of Tennessee professor accused of hiding his relationship with a Chinese university while receiving NASA research grants, and the university has since offered to reinstate it.

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

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