[UPDATE Feb 2020 : Shan Shi was sentenced to 16 months in prison and ordered to forfeit more than $330,000]
Shan Shi, a Chinese national, has been convicted of one count of conspiracy to commit theft of trade secrets from a Houston company. This follows a nine-day federal trial in Washington, D.C.
I wrote about the original indictment back in May 2017 that charged 6 other individuals. 4 US nationals & 1 Canadian living in Houston were also charged along with one Chinese employee of a manufacturing firm in China.
Shi conspired with others to steal trade secrets from the North Houston manufacturing plant of Trelleborg Offshore, a Swedish multi-national. The company manufactured syntactic foam, a strong, lightweight material with uses for deep-sea oil and gas drilling. It also has uses in military applications.
Four of Shi’s co-defendants had previously pleaded guilty to conspiring to steal trade secrets. Some of the co-defendants worked at the plant and helped deliver engineering drawings and specifications to Shi. The job titles of the Trelleborg employees were Materials Development Manager, Materials Development Engineer, Production Supervisor, and Operations Systems Specialist
Shi passed the drawings to a Chinese company in Taizhou. In return, the Chinese company sent Shi’s company in Houston $3.1 million between 2014 and 2017. As well as paying off his co-defendants, Shi used the money to buy a $1.8 million house in the Memorial Villages area.
Sentencing has been set for Oct. 25, 2019. The maximum sentence for conspiracy to commit theft of trade secrets is 10 years.