Meyya Meyyappan, a senior NASA scientist, pleaded guilty at a Manhattan federal court for maintaining undisclosed affiliations with China.
Meyyappan had failed to disclose his participation in China’s ‘Thousand Talents Program,’ a Chinese government initiative to recruit individuals with access to or knowledge of foreign technology or intellectual property. He also lied about it to NASA investigators and FBI agents in an interview on October 27, 2020, and falsely told them that he was not a member of the Thousand Talents Program.
According to the Department of Justice, "Meyyappan was charged with one count of making false statements, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000, or twice the gross gain or loss from the offense. The maximum potential sentence, in this case, is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge."