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TAIWAN CHIPMAKER UMC FINED $60M FOR TRADE SECRET THEFT

United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC) said it has pleaded guilty to trade secret theft in the United States, will pay a $60 million fine, and will cooperate with the prosecution of China’s Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit Co Ltd. 

The plea comes over two years since the US Department of Justice (DOJ) indicted UMC, Fujian and three individuals for conspiracy to steal, possess and convey trade secrets of US peer Micron Technology Inc., Lisa Lambert and Kanishka Singh reported for Reuters. 


The US alleges state-owned Fujian used those secrets in its memory chip designs. Fujian has previously denied wrongdoing. 


UMC said it pleaded guilty to one count of receiving and possessing a stolen trade secret, but did not transfer Micron secrets or any unauthorized third-party information to Fujian. As part of a plea deal, UMC said the DOJ would dismiss allegations including conspiracy to commit economic espionage, as well as a related civil case. The Taiwanese firm will also be subject to a three-year term of “non-supervised probation.” Aside from the fine amount, UMC has no further financial obligations to DOJ, the chipmaker said.





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