Kolon Charged With Trade Secret Theft | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 90 Issue 43 | p. 22 | Concentrates
Issue Date: October 22, 2012

Kolon Charged With Trade Secret Theft

Department: Business
Keywords: trade secrets, theft, aramid fiber, consultants

A grand jury in Richmond, Va., has indicted South Korea’s Kolon Industries and five of its employees. They are charged with stealing trade secrets from p-aramid fiber makers DuPont and Teijin. Department of Justice prosecutors are seeking a $225 million fine from Kolon. The firm’s employees, including a senior executive and the head of aramid R&D, also face conspiracy and obstruction of justice charges, which carry penalties of up to 10 years in prison and millions of dollars in fines. “This indictment should send a strong message to companies located in the U.S. and around the world that industrial espionage is not a business strategy,” says Neil H. MacBride, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. Prosecutors say Kolon hired five former DuPont employees and a former Teijin employee as consultants and pressed them to reveal proprietary information. The federal action comes about a year after DuPont won a $920 million verdict against Kolon for aramid trade secret theft.

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