Three Named By Federal Grand Jury
SACRAMENTO (AP) _ A federal grand jury indicted three people Friday on charges of shipping nearly a million dollars worth of sophisticated electronic gear to Hong Kong and Pakistan.
U.S. Attorney David Levi declined to provide details of the equipment, describing it only as ″oscilloscopes and computer equipment ... computer testing gear.″
Levi said the equipment was ″important to the strategic or foreign policy interests of the United States,″ but would not elaborate.
The New York Times reported in its Saturday editions that the equipment can be used to make nuclear bombs.
″It is quite sophisticated testing equipment that can be used in research connected with a nculear program,″ the Times quoted an unnamed government expert as saying.
The indictments charge Arnold and Rona Mandel of Grass Valley, Calif., and Leung Yiu Hung of Hong Kong with shipping the equipment between July 1982 and August 1983.
The Mandels operated two exporting businesses that made 15 shipments of the strategic electronic goods to Hong Kong, the indictments said. In Hong Kong, the Fortune Enterprise Co. operated by Leung, shipped the equipment to Pakistan, according to the indictments.
The shipments were valued at $993,000. Lueng had placed orders with the Mandels for about $2.5 million worth of gear, Levi said.
The equipment was manufactured by Tekronix Corp., an Oregon-based company that was not involved in the exports detailed by the indictments, he said.
The U.S. government, under provisions of the Export Administration Act, has restrictions on the exportation of such equipment, requiring a special business license from the Commerce Department. The Mandels and Leung did not have the license, according to the indictments.
Earlier this week, a Pakistani citizen was arrested in Philadelphia on charges he tried to export a special steel to Pakistan that could be used to make nuclear weapons.
The State Department announced Friday that Undersecretary of State Michael H. Armacost planned to visit Pakistan to discuss the issue.
Leung was charged with one count of conspiracy, nine counts of exporting controlled technology without a license and 13 counts of wire fraud.
He faces a maximum of 115 years in prison and $478,000 in fines if convicted on all counts.
The Mandels were charged with a single count of conspiracy, 10 counts of illicitly exporting controlled technology and six counts of submitting false statements to a government agency.
If convicted on all counts, the couple could face a maximum prison term of 85 years each and fines up to $550,000.
Levi said his office would seek Leung’s extradition from Hong Kong. The Mandels have been ordered to appear before U.S. Magistrate Esther Mix in Sacramento on Aug. 10.