US sentences Chinese hacker for stealing military information
A Chinese businessman who pleaded guilty to hacking sensitive military information has been sentenced to nearly four years in prison in the US.
Su Bin admitted collaborating with hackers in the Chinese military to steal data from US defence companies between 2008 and 2014.
He was arrested in Canada in 2014 and extradited to the US.
The Chinese government has repeatedly denied any involvement in hacking foreign companies or governments.
In addition to the 46-month prison sentence, the Los Angeles court also ordered Su to pay a $10,000 (£7,600) fine.
“Su Bin’s sentence is a just punishment for his admitted role in a conspiracy with hackers from the People’s Liberation Army Air Force to illegally access and steal sensitive US military information,” assistant attorney general John Carlin said in a statement.
“Su assisted the Chinese military hackers in their efforts to illegally access and steal designs for cutting-edge military aircraft that are indispensable to our national defence,” he explained.
Mr Su pleaded guilty to one count of conspiring to gain unauthorised access to a protected computer and to violate the Arms Export Control Act.
He said he helped the hackers for personal financial gain, admitting he passed on information to Chinese hackers about which persons, companies and technologies to target.
He also pleaded guilty to translating the stolen material into Chinese.
The hack had targeted information on transport planes and fighter jets that was then offered for sale to Chinese companies.
China and the US have regularly swapped accusations about who is behind the cyber-attacks they each suffer.
In 2015, China arrested a group of hackers after the US government supplied them with a list of cybercrime suspects, accused of having stolen research and development information.