The fate of the 66-year-old engineer who was found to be working as a spy for the Chinese government will be decided on Wednesday as he faces sentencing in the first prosecution of such kind in the United States.
Szuhsiung “Allen” Ho has confessed earlier this year to accusations of purchasing American nuclear technology secrets. According to Knox News, Ho’s admission of guilt is in compliance of a plea bargain negotiated by attorneys Wade Davies and Peter Zeidenberg as he hopes to get a shorter sentencing.
All details on the sentencing have so far been kept from the media, and are under seal.
Based on the plea deal, Ho got involved because he wanted to make money and was only aiding China to make cheaper nuclear energy by using American technology and expertise.
The case, which is the first of its kind regarding China’s involvement with stolen U.S. nuclear technology, was scheduled for Wednesday’s hearing in U.S. District Court in Knoxville, presided by Chief U.S. District Judge Tom Varlan. Prosecuting attorneys Charles Atchley Jr. and Bart Slabbekorn have presented the case against Ho.
According to Atchley, the Chinese government paid millions of dollars through Ho to buy American information on nuclear energy production, a component used to make nuclear weapons. Atchley has alleged that Ho worked for the Chinese government and spent most of his time in China.
An indictment in April 2016 alleged that Ho, his company Energy Technology International, and Chinese nuclear power plant China General Nuclear Power attempted to secretly lure U.S. nuclear experts into providing information that would help carry out China’s development and production of nuclear material based on American technology.
The Chinese government has so far refused to acknowledge the indictment involving its own nuclear power company.
Ho is a naturalized American citizen who was born in Taiwan, educated in the U.S. and lives in Wilmington, Delaware.
Feature Image via Knox County Sheriff’s Office