TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - 49-year-old Wei Sun, a Chinese national and naturalized citizen of the United States, was sentenced to 38 months in prison by District Court Judge Rosemary Marquez for previously pleading guilty to one felony count of violating the Arms Export Control Act (AECA).
Sun was employed in Tucson for 10 years as an electrical engineer with Raytheon Missiles and Defense. Raytheon Missiles and Defense develops and produces missile systems for use by the United States military. During his employment, Sun had access to information to defense-related technology. Some of this defense technical information constituted what is defined as “defense articles,” which are controlled and prohibited from export without a license under the AECA and the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (the ITAR).
From December 2018 to January 2019, Sun traveled from the United States to China on a personal trip. On that trip, Sun brought unclassified technical information in his company-issued computer, including data associated with an advanced missile guidance system that was controlled and regulated under the AECA and the ITAR. Despite having been trained to handle these materials correctly, Sun knowingly transported the information to China without an export license in violation of the AECA and the ITAR.
“Sun was a highly skilled engineer entrusted with sensitive missile technology that he knew he could not legally transfer to hostile hands,” said Assistant Attorney General John C. Demers. “Nevertheless, he delivered that controlled technology to China. Today’s sentence should stand as a warning to others who might be tempted similarly to put the nation’s security at risk.”
The Federal Bureau of Investigation, looked into this matter with the assistance of Raytheon Missiles and Defense. Beverly K. Anderson and Nicole P. Savel, Assistant United States Attorneys, and William Mackie from the National Security Division, Counterintelligence and Export Control Section, handled the prosecution.