A Chinese national in Massachusetts on business was arrested for illegally supplying U.S. origin parts to end-users in China in violation of U.S. export laws.
Qiang Hu, a/k/a Johnson Hu, 47, was charged in a complaint with conspiracy to violate the
Export Administration Regulations and the International Emergency Economic
Powers Act. The complaint, originally
filed on May 18, was unsealed after Hu’s arrest at his hotel in North Andover
The complaint alleges that Hu has
been the sales manager at MKS Instruments Shanghai Ltd. (MKS-Shanghai) since
2008. MKS-Shanghai is the Shanghai sales office of MKS Instruments Inc. (MKS),
which is headquartered in Andover. Hu’s employment gave him access to
MKS-manufactured parts, including export-controlled pressure-measuring sensors
(manometer types 622B, 623B, 626A, 626B, 627B, 722A, and 722B), which are commonly known as pressure transducers.
Pressure transducers are export controlled because they are used in gas
centrifuges to enrich uranium and produce weapons-grade uranium.
The complaint alleges that beginning
in 2007, Hu and others caused thousands of MKS pressure transducers worth
millions of dollars to be exported from the United States and delivered to
unauthorized end-users using export licenses that were fraudulently obtained
from the U.S. Department of Commerce.
The complaint alleges that Hu and his
co-conspirators used two primary means of deception to export the pressure
transducers. First, the conspirators used licenses issued to legitimate MKS
business customers to export the pressure transducers to China and then caused
the parts to be delivered to other end-users who were not themselves named on
the export licenses or authorized to receive the parts. Second, the conspirators
obtained export licenses in the name of a front company and then used these fraudulently
obtained licenses to export the parts to China, where they were delivered to the
MKS is not a target of the government’s investigation into these matters.
Hu remains in custody and is scheduled for a detention hearing on May 31 at
11 a.m. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison,
to be followed by up to three years of supervised release, and a $1 million
United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz; Richard DesLauriers, Special Agent in
Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Office; Bruce M.
Foucart, Special Agent in Charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s
Office of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; and John J. McKenna,
Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Department of Commerce, Office of Export Enforcement,
Boston Field Office made the announcement today. The case is being prosecuted by
Assistant U.S. Attorneys William D. Weinreb and B. Stephanie Siegmann in Ortiz’s
Antiterrorism and National Security Unit.
The details contained in the complaint are allegations. The defendant is
presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt
in a court of law.
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