Space: January 21, 2003


The US State Department has charged Hughes Space & Communications (and its present owner, Boeing Satellite systems, and its former owner, Hughes Electronics) with 123 violations of the Arms Export Control Act. The company is said to have given China key missile and space technology to help China launch Hughes satellites, technology the Chinese then applied to missiles targeted on the US. Each of the 123 violations could bring a fine of $500,000, and the company could be banned from receiving US export licenses. If pushed to the extreme, it could put the company all but out of business. The company denies that it did anything wrong but is negotiating a settlement with the government.--Stephen V Cole


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