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Utah Scientist being sentenced for trade theft

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - A scientist accused of stealing a secret formula from a chemistry company is heading to federal court in Salt Lake City for sentencing in what authorities call Utah's first industrial espionage case.
PAUL FOY
Associated Press

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - A scientist accused of stealing a secret formula from a chemistry company is heading to federal court in Salt Lake City for sentencing in what authorities call Utah's first industrial espionage case.

Prabhu Mohapatra faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine early Thursday on a charge of unlawful access to a protected database.

In a plea statement, the 42-year-old scientist says he emailed a secret drug recipe from the Utah company to a brother-in-law in India.

Federal investigators have said the relative planned to undercut prices charged by North Logan-based Frontier Scientific Inc. for an organic chemical with applications ranging from prescription drugs to solar cells and batteries.

Prosecutors say some testimony at Thursday's sentencing hearing will be closed to protect the company's trade secrets.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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