Last week, it was announced that a dual citizen of China and Canada had been arrested for attempting to steal trade secrets and computer data from a Raynham-based medical technology company. 44-year-old Dong Liu or Kevin was charged in a criminal complaint with a single count of attempted theft of trade secrets and a count of attempted access to a computer without authorization and in excess of authorized access with the intention to obtain information from a protected computer.
The defendant was detained after an initial appearance in a Boston federal court on the afternoon of August 31, 2017. Charging documents detail the nature of the Medrobotics Corporation. The company, which is headquartered in Raynham, Massachusetts, makes a robot-assisted device that helps surgeons access and visualize difficult to reach areas of the human body during minimally invasive surgeries. The company has invested millions of dollars in robotics technology that has not been patented.
According to the charging documents, a man was spotted in a conference room belonging to Medrobotics on August 28, 2017 at 7:30 PM. The man, who was later identified as Liu, appeared to be sitting beside three open laptop computers. The CEO of the company approached Liu and asked his identity. Liu mentioned an employee, who the CEO knew was out of the country for a few weeks. Then, Liu named another employee. The CEO recognized that the named employee had not scheduled such a meeting.
Then, Liu named the CEO himself. It is alleged that Liu claimed to be working with a Chinese patent law firm. He supposedly showed the CEO his LinkedIn profile. Liu claimed to lead the firm’s intellectual property practice in medical devices. Police eventually responded to the location and questioned Liu. At this point, the defendant gave conflicting statements. A check of the company’s visitor log book showed that no visitor had signed into the building that day, despite the company’s policy requiring all visitors to sign in.
Charging documents show that Liu told the CEO he had entered the Medrobotics building around 5:00 PM. Video monitoring showed that the defendant entered the building around 5:00 PM and 6:00 PM, well before he was found in the conference room. An investigation showed that Liu had been in contact with Medrobotics employees via LinkedIn.
At the time of his arrest, Liu had two laptop computers, two portable hard drives, an iPad, 10 cellphone SIM cards, two digital camcorders, at least two flash drives, and other data equipment. It is unknown whether or not Liu was able to successfully acquire computer information or trade secrets. The details provided above are allegations. The defendant remains innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.