Former arms company engineer pleads guilty to weapons count

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TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — A naturalized U.S. citizen from China who worked for 10 years for a Raytheon Corp. subsidiary as an electrical engineer has pleaded guilty to a federal arms exportation charge.

Wei Sun pleaded guilty Friday in U.S. District Court in Tucson, where Raytheon Missile Systems has a large defense plant that produces missiles.

In a plea agreement with prosecutors, Sun acknowledged taking a Raytheon laptop to China on a 2018 personal trip and acknowledged that it contained sensitive material, including a user's guide for an air-to-air missile.

A five-count indictment charging Sun did not allege he actually shared any of the information but merely moving sensitive weapons files out of the country without permission violates federal law on arms exports.

Sentencing was set for April 28.

The plea agreement said the 48-year-old Sun could normally face up to 20 years in prison on his guilty plea to the one count but that he would get a a significantly reduced sentence, with the amount depending on his cooperation.

Sun previously pleaded not guilty in March 2019 to an earlier version of the indictment that included allegations related to other overseas trips to countries in addition to China.

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