A UA professor was arrested May 8 on wire fraud charges, according to the United States’ Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Arkansas.
The criminal complaint filed against UA electrical engineering professor Simon Saw-Teong Ang, 63, alleges that he had close ties with the Chinese government and Chinese companies which he did not disclose when applying for and receiving grant money from NASA, David Clay
Fowlkes, Acting United States Attorney for the Western District, said in a press release. The complaint alleges that numerous wires were sent and received.
Ang has been suspended without pay, and the UofA is actively cooperating with the federal investigation, John Thomas, manager of University Communications, said in an email.
The FBI is investigating the charges against Ang, according to the press release. If convicted,
Ang faces a maximum punishment of 20 years in prison.
Ang has been a UA professor since 1988, and is a UA alumnus, according to the UofA. Prior to his suspension, Ang was the director of the High Density Electronics Center in the Department of Electrical Engineering.
Rep. Steve Womack (AR-3) issued a press release Tuesday, acknowledging the seriousness of the charge against Ang and denouncing what he views as China’s efforts to target American enterprise.
“From our supply chain to academia, they are employing all tools to try and subvert our institutions and steal proprietary information,” Womack said. “The Chinese Communist Party – and anyone supporting their hostile and illegal efforts – must be held accountable.”