Legal talks in the case of the Hytera criminal conspiracy continue with awaiting delivery of the key | Panda Anku

First federal court conferences in the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) criminal conspiracy case against Hytera Communications and several individuals continue in October, by which time a key individual is expected to be extradited to the United States, according to testimonies made during a conference that was carried out this week.

On Tuesday, U.S. District Court John Tharp Jr. conducted a conference call between the relevant parties and ruled — at Hytera’s unopposed request — to continue the conference on October 20 “to facilitate the ongoing review of the extensive discovery and to recognize the fact that.” at least one defendant will be extradited to the US and will also require time to verify the discovery,” a log entry said.

During the conference call, it was announced that Gee Siong Kok – also known as GS Kok – is due to be extradited from Britain to the United States within the next few weeks.

GS Kok is a former Senior Vice President at Hytera Communications based in China who is widely credited with leading Hytera’s efforts to develop products based on the DMR protocols. GS Kok joined Hytera in 2008, shortly after leaving Motorola (the company had not changed its name to Motorola Solutions at the time) where he worked in a Malaysian facility.

Hytera emails indicate that starting in June 2007, GS Kok was personally recruited by the Hytera CEO, who eventually offered him a 78% salary increase and over $2 million in stock options to lead the DMR Group von Hytera, according to the criminal complaint filed by the US Department of Justice. GS Kok submitted his letter of resignation to Motorola on December 31, 2007 and joined Hytera on February 1, 2008.

At that time, Hytera Communications was struggling with the development of DMR products. GS Kok noted this in an email to Hytera’s CEO in 2008, saying he was “surprised[d] to find out that after 3 years of DMR development by Hytera before the arrival of former Motorola employees and the DMR trade secrets, we do not have a prototype radio, the criminal complaint states.

“Company B [Hytera] required to steal Company A [Motorola’s] trade secrets to compete in the DMR market,” the criminal complaint reads.

GS Kok reportedly recruited more Motorola employees in Malaysia to join his Hytera team over the next five months. Several of these recruits — named as conspirators in the DoJ’s criminal complaint — copied tens of thousands of Motorola DMR documents and brought them to Hytera. Although some of the alleged conspirators were told that Hytera would be rewriting the DMR software, according to the DoJ’s criminal complaint, the China-based company LMR often just copied and pasted software code — even including typos.

These stolen trade secrets and copyrighted software code were at the center of a civil lawsuit filed by Motorola Solutions against Hytera Communications in 2017. After a four-month trial, a federal court jury unanimously found Hytera guilty — a finding upheld by U.S. District Judge Charles Norgle im March 2020.

During the civil trial that began in November 2019, Hytera’s attorneys admitted that three former Motorola employees – GS Kok, Samuel Chia and YT Kok – accessed more than 7,000 Motorola documents before each of them shortly thereafter imprisoned left Hytera in 2008 and came to Hytera. Hytera’s lawyers described the three engineers as “bad apples” who did not tell anyone at Hytera that Motorola’s DMR trade secrets and software were stolen.

All three former Motorola employees who were hired by Hytera invoked the Fifth Amendment when questioned as part of the civil case. The Justice Department indictment notes that individual defendants have been charged in the Hytera criminal conspiracy case, but all of those names have been redacted from the publicly available version of the indictment.

In addition to GS Kok, Samuel Chia, and YT Kok, the April DoJ criminal complaint identified four other individual conspirators: Wong Kiat Hoe, Yu Kok Hoong, Chua Siew Wei, and Phaik Ee Ooi. Hytera Communications was charged as a company with criminal conspiracy in February when the names of the alleged individual conspirators were blacked out.

Both the civil and criminal cases against Hytera revolve around allegations that Hytera developed much of its successful DMR product line using trade secrets and proprietary software stolen from Motorola Solutions some 14 years ago. For this reason, although the criminal and civil proceedings against Hytera Communications are separate legal matters, much of the evidence is the same.

Indeed, a statement during this week’s conference call revealed that more than 10 million documents – excluding electronic communications such as emails – are being cited as evidence in the criminal conspiracy case against Hytera Communications. However, Hytera’s lawyers are “only” new to a few hundred thousand of these documents, since most of them were introduced in civil proceedings.

The civil and criminal lawsuits against Hytera Communications could also affect the China-based company LMR. A few weeks ago, Hytera Communications failed to pay Motorola Solutions a large royalty based on Hytera’s DMR sales over the past three years. Hytera’s attorneys had suggested that failure to pay the court-ordered royalty was a possibility, citing the company’s cost of defending against the Justice Department’s criminal conspiracy charges as one reason why the money might not be available.

Because Hytera Communications is unwilling to honor its royalty obligations, Motorola Solutions has asked Judge Norgle to find Hytera in contempt of court and issue a global injunction that would prevent Hytera from selling products worldwide.

Meanwhile, both Hytera Communications and Motorola Solutions have appealed certain of Judge Norgle’s rulings to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, which court documents say recently decided to consolidate the appeals into a single case.

Leave a Comment