The wife of a Beijing businessman has been arrested and charged by U.S. authorities for allegedly conspiring to steal genetically modified corn seed from American companies.
Mo Yun allegedly dug up corn seeds and stole ears of corn developed by Monsanto Co., DuPont Co. and LG Seeds. She planned to send them back to the seed company in China that’s part of her husband’s business, the DOJ said.
Her husband is Shao Genhuo, the chairman of the huge Beijing Dabeinong Technology Group.
Mo’s indictment came after her brother Mo Hailong was arrested and indicted on the same charges in December last year. He’s a director of Beijing Dabeinong Technology Group and will stand trial in December. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Beijing Dabeinong Technology is a Chinese conglomerate with 67 subsidiaries including a corn seed subsidiary called Beijing Kings Nower Seed, Reuters said, citing a U.S. Attorney.
Five other individuals have been indicted in the alleged seed theft scheme. They include three executives from Beijing Kings Nower Seed — Li Shaoming, Wang Lei and Ye Jian — and a China-born Canada resident, Wang Hongwei.
The investigation began after a DuPont security guard found the conspirators digging up seeds from a test field in Iowa.
Sources: Bloomberg, Reuters, Wall Street Journal
Hui Zhi is the Senior Manager for Content with the China Compliance Digest, where a version of this post first appeared.