© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The logo of US conglomerate General Electric is pictured at the company’s site of its energy branch in Belfort

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A former engineer and a Chinese businessman have been charged with economic espionage and conspiring to steal trade secrets from General Electric (NYSE:) Co to benefit China, according to an indictment unsealed by the U.S. Justice Department on Tuesday.

Xiaoqing Zheng, a former engineer at GE, was previously charged by the Justice Department in August in connection with the alleged theft.

However, the indictment unsealed on Tuesday against the former engineer and Chinese businessman Zhaoxi Zhang marks the first time that the U.S. government has formally alleged that the scheme was carried out in order to benefit China, and that the Chinese government provided “financial and other support.”

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2019-04-23