Apple Driverless Car Secrets Stolen

Apple Driverless Car Secrets Stolen
An Apple ex-employee has been arrested while fleeing to China with trade secrets, according to a report.

(CCM) — A former Apple employee has been arrested at San Jose airport in California and charged with stealing trade secrets relating to Apple's driverless car project, the BBC is reporting.

Xiaolang Zhang is accused of stealing the self-driving car secrets and attempting to take them to China. Apple says in court documents that he planned to offer the information to Xiaopeng Motors, a Chinese autonomous vehicle start-up company.

Zhang was hired as a software and hardware developer for Apple in 2015. But after informing Apple in April that he intended to leave the company and join Xiaopeng Motors, Apple's security team discovered that Zhang had downloaded "copious pages" of secret information as well as taking hardware from the company's autonomous vehicle lab, the documents allege.

The FBI confirmed that Zhang had stolen engineering schematics, as well as technical reports and reference manuals, according to the BBC.

Apple said in a statement: "We're working with authorities on this matter and will do everything possible to make sure this individual and any other individuals involved are held accountable for their actions."

The maximum penalty for stealing trade secrets in this case is a fine of up to $250,000 or ten years in jail.

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