Thursday, December 5, 2013

Engineer Arrested for Stealing Shipbuilding Secrets

Canadian authorities on Dec. 1 arrested a naturalized citizen for allegedly trying to sell national shipbuilding secrets to China.

The arrested man, Qing Quentin Huang, is a Toronto resident employed by Lloyd’s Register Canada. The company is a subcontractor to Irving Shipbuilding, whose projects include the Arctic Offshore Patrol Ship project, a vessel procurement plan for the Royal Canadian Navy.

In a statement, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police said it was notified Nov. 28 that Huang was “taking steps to pass sensitive information” to authorities from the People’s Republic of China.
The information allegedly relates to elements of the Government of Canada National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy, which includes patrol ships, frigates, naval auxiliary vessels, science research vessels and icebreakers.

“In these types of cases, sharing of information may give a foreign entity a tactical, military or competitive advantage by knowing the specifications of vessels responsible for defending Canadian waters and Canadian sovereignty,” RCMP Chief Superintendent Jennifer Strachan said.

The RCMP said that after it was informed of Huang’s actions, it initiated a criminal investigation dubbed Project Seascape.

In a statement released the day of the arrest, Irving Shipbuilding President Kevin McCoy said Huang didn’t have direct access to any classified or controlled information relating to vessels built as part of the Arctic Offshore Patrol Ship project.

“Security of information surrounding the AOPS project, and all NSPS programs is tightly controlled at Irving Shipbuilding,” McCoy said. “We adhere to all security protocols required by our customers.”

Huang, who has been suspended without pay, was one of 20 marine engineers at Lloyd’s Register’s Burlington, Ontario location since April 2006. His was a structural design appraisal engineer tasked with assessing ship designs for compliance with industry standards.