Tuesday, November 24, 2009, 11/24/2009 10:45:00 AM

Alleged Ford Motor Trade Secret Thief Jailed While Awaiting Trial

By Todd

The Detroit Free Press is reporting that U.S. District Judge Gerald Rosen has ordered that a former Ford product engineer remain jailed while he awaits trial on charges of stealing documents from the Dearborn automaker.

Xiang Dong Yu, also known as Mike Yu, 47, of Beijing, was indicted last month on federal charges of theft of trade secrets, attempted theft of trade secrets and unauthorized access to a protected computer.

On Thursday, Magistrate Judge Mark Randon ruled that Yu could be free while he awaits trial on the charges.

The U.S. Attorney's Office appealed that ruling and Rosen overturned Yu's release on Friday.
During a hearing Thursday, U.S. Assistant Attorney Cathleen Corken argued that Yu, a Chinese citizen, has no family, employment or property in the United States and is a flight risk.

Yu was arrested Oct. 14 at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport, where Corken said the government seized a laptop computer that had thousands of pages of documents from Ford as well as from another, undisclosed company.

The government estimates that the documents are worth $24 million to $32 million.
Corken said Yu, who already faces five felony counts and more than 6 1/2 years in prison, could face additional charges.
Let's face it folks - if you're a highly mobile Chinese national with a number of aliases and you're in Detroit and you're accused of stealing competitively-sensitive secrets from a major auto company, you've got some strikes against you when it comes to being free on bail awaiting trial.


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