Theft of Trade Secrets Sentencing
|U.S. Attorney’s Office December 14, 2010|
Michael J. Moore, United States Attorney, announced that Kevin Crow, age 57, was sentenced on December 13, 2010 to 36 months in federal prison without parole, three years' supervised release, a $10,000.00 fine, and a mandatory assessment of $100.00.
Crow was charged in a one-count information with theft of trade secrets, in violation of Title 18 United States Code, Section 1832. He entered a plea agreement on June 11, 2010.
The defendant was an engineer employed by Turbine Engines Components Technologies Corporation (TECT) in Thomasville, Georgia, from approximately August 1979 until June of 2007, when the defendant was laid off by the company. TECT manufactures a diverse range of products related to or including trade secrets. These products range from premium forged hand tools and medical instruments to aircraft hardware and turbine engine components, all of which are related to interstate and or foreign commerce. As an employee of TECT, Crow continually provided policy statements with explicit direction on identifying trade secrets within the company and how to protect those trade secrets. During Crow’s exit interview, he signed a document stating that he had returned all documents containing any trade secret information to TECT, when in fact, he had taken approximately 100 computer discs containing multiple pieces of information considered trade secrets from TECT.
Crow was later employed by Precision Components International (PCI) in Columbus, Georgia, a competitor of TECT. Both companies are in the business of manufacturing and selling engine blades for military aircraft engines. After being employed with PCI, Crow made numerous contacts with employees of TECT requesting forging price sheets containing vendor and customer information. He also requested copies of TECT's 2007 and 2008 contract reviews that contained trade secret information. Crow admitted in a conversation with a TECT employee that he took computer discs, blueprints, and cost and pricing information belonging to TECT, and admitted that providing the information could be considered industrial espionage.
The United States and the defendant, through counsel, stipulated that Turbine Engines Components Technologies Corporation (TECT) suffered losses not exceeding $14 million.
United States Attorney Michael Moore said, “This type of industrial espionage is a serious matter, especially when it involves the production of parts for our military aircraft.”
The damages alone to TECT and its employees might be calculated in dollars, but the potential harm to our military equipment readiness is still unknown."
The case was investigated by Special Agent Andy Crabtree of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, along with agents of Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The prosecution was conducted by Assistant United States Attorney Jennifer Kolman.
Questions concerning the case should be directed to Sue McKinney, Public Affairs Specialist, United States Attorney's Office at (478) 752-3511.