FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — A University of Arkansas professor pleaded guilty Friday, Jan. 21 to one count of making a false statement to the FBI about the existence of patents for his inventions in China according to a press release from the United States Attorney’s Office Western District of Arkansas.
Simon Saw-Teong Ang, 64, of Fayetteville, entered his guilty plea over charges of making a materially false and fictitious statement and representation to an FBI special agent. According to court documents, 24 patents filed in the People’s Republic of China have Ang’s name or Chinese birth name.
The University of Arkansas required individuals such as Ang to promptly give the university “full and complete” disclosures of inventions, and university policy provided that it, not the inventors, would own all inventions created by those subject to the policy.
According to documents, the policy was established “in furtherance of the commitment of the university to the widest possible distribution of the benefits of university research, the protection of inventions resulting from such research, and the development of inventions for the public good.”
Despite this requirement, the release says Ang did not disclose his patents to the university, and when interviewed by an agent, lied about his involvement in the inventions. He specifically lied about having his name listed as “inventor” on numerous patents in the foreign country.
In addition, Ang also received numerous talent awards from the People’s Republic of China government, which he did not list on the university’s annual conflict of interest disclosure forms, according to the release.
Ang’s sentencing is expected to take place in approximately four months, the court said. He faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison. His plea agreement also states that if the court wishes to give him a sentence that is not a year and a day, he has the right to withdraw from the agreement, according to the release.
A federal district court judge will determine a sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other factors.