(InformingNews.com) – The Nobel Prize is a highly coveted award. Some people will do almost anything to get one, and for one former Harvard professor, it caught up with him.
On December 21, a federal jury found Charles Lieber, former chairman of Harvard University’s chemistry department and nanoscientist, guilty of crimes associated with failing to report income he made in a Chinese research program.
A Harvard University professor was convicted by a federal jury for lying to the US about his involvement with China's government https://t.co/iqyFXLfPmS
— CNN (@CNN) December 22, 2021
Lieber was part of the People’s Republic of China’s Thousand Talents Program starting in 2011. Participating in the program is not a crime, but the professor failed to report his Chinese bank account, filed false tax returns and lied to authorities. In total, the jury convicted him on six counts.
The contract the scientist worked under was with the Wuhan University of Technology, which agreed to pay a monthly salary of up to $50,000 with up to $150,000 for living expenses. He also received over $1.5 million to create his lab at the university.
In his defense, Lieber said he thought participating in the program would help his reputation, and he was naïve when he made the deal. His attorney, Marc Mukasey, said they would appeal the verdict.
The judge did not set a sentencing date at the time of conviction. The charges each carry as much as five years in prison and fines up to $250,000.
While Lieber may feel that he really did no harm here, the bigger question is, why did he find the need to lie about his association with China in the first place?
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