Our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy have changed.

By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

Couple charged with GM hybrid tech theft

by Peter Valdes-Dapena, senior writer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Federal authorities in Detroit charged a Michigan couple Thursday with stealing information about hybrid vehicle technology from General Motors and attempting to put it to use for a Chinese car company.

Yu Chin and his wife Sanshan Du of Troy, Mich., have been charged with, among other things, unauthorized possession of trade secrets and wire fraud.

yu_qin_shanshan_du.jpg
Sanshan Du (left) and Yu Chin

According to the charges, from December 2003 to May 2006 Du conspired to obtain trade secrets about the automaker's hybrid vehicle technologies and passed that information to her husband who used it for the couple's own company, Millennium Technology International (MTI).

In January, 2005 GM offered Du, then a GM employee, a severance package. About five days later, she copied thousands of GM documents to a computer hard drive used for MTI business, authorities allege.

MTI later entered into a business venture to provide hybrid technology to the Chinese automaker Chery Automobile, a company that is a competitor of GM's in China.

In May 2006, the couple drove to a dumpster behind a grocery store where they discarded bags of shredded documents related to the case, authorities charge.

GM estimates the stolen information to be worth about $40 million, according to an announcement from U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Michigan.

"We cooperated with the U.S. attorney's office in developing the case and will continue to cooperate with them as appropriate," GM spokesman Tom Wilkinson said.

CNN has not yet been able to reach the couple or their lawyers.

A Chery Automobile spokesperson was not immediately available for comment. To top of page

Find Your Next Car
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 16,613.18 -41.59 -0.25%
Nasdaq 4,817.48 4.77 0.10%
S&P 500 1,984.65 -3.01 -0.15%
Treasuries 2.18 0.01 0.42%
Data as of 1:12pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Freeport-McMoRan Inc... 10.51 0.32 3.17%
Bank of America Corp... 16.35 -0.09 -0.55%
Apple Inc 112.84 -0.08 -0.07%
Alcoa Inc 9.30 0.44 4.97%
Intel Corp 28.50 0.78 2.82%
Data as of 12:56pm ET
Sponsors

Sections

Efforts to unionize low-wage employees of fast-food franchisees and outside contractors get lift from decision of NLRB. More

Brazil's government announced that its economy fell into recession, shrinking 2.6% from a year ago. More

How do you run a successful crowdfunding campaign? Indiegogo's CEO Slava Rubin offers his top tips and mistakes to avoid. More

Mom and pop investors are dumping their investments and moving to cash at levels not seen since the financial crisis of 2008. More