Chinese National Sentenced in US Prison for Hacking Charges

A Chinese businessman who faced charges of conspiring to hack Boeing and other US defense contractors’ computer systems and networks to steal military data has been sentenced to nearly 4 years in prison by a US District Court.

Su Bin, a Chinese national and owner of an aviation technology company in the country was sentenced to 46 months in prison by a US judge at the District Court in Los Angeles.

51-year-old Bin faced up to 30-year is prison before he plead guilty to conspiring to export US military secrets, along with two unnamed hackers in China.

Su admitted to having worked with the hackers in China between 2008 and 2014, pointing them to the targeted data in seeking to transmit them back to state-owned Chinese corporations.

Altogether, some 65 gigabytes of sensitive data related to the F-22 and the F-35 fighter jets, as well as the Boeing C-17 military cargo aircraft program were stolen.

Related read: China Read Emails of Top U.S. Officials since April 2010

Assistant Attorney General Carlin said the following after the sentencing:

Su Bin’s sentence is a just punishment for his admitted role in a conspiracy with hackers from the People’s Liberation Army Air Force to illegally access and steal sensitive U.S. military information.

“Su assisted the Chinese military hackers in their efforts to illegally access and steal designs for cutting-edge military aircraft that are indispensable to our national defense,” revealed General Carlin.  These activities have serious consequences for the national security of our country and the safety of the men and women of our armed services.”

Su was arrested in Canada in July 2014 following a warrant that was directly related to the case. Su then waive extradition back to China, before consenting to be conveyed over to the United States from Canada in February 2016.

On March 23 this year, Su plead guilty to one count of conspiring to gain unauthorized access to a protected computer in the United States. The count also carried the charge of violating the Arms Export Control Act, wherein he exported defense articles from the US Munitions List that were included in the International Traffic in Arms Regulations.

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