Seoul Semiconductor of South Korea, reported that the International Crimes 4 Team at the Gyeonggi Nambu Provincial Police Agency in Korea intends to detain three former Seoul Semiconductor employees for alleged LED technology theft. According to Seoul Semiconductor, a former managing director of Seoul Semiconductor, and two other former employees were found to have divulged Seoul’s automotive LED technology to a Tawain-based competitor, Everlight Electronics.
Seoul says that the three individuals will be charged for violating the Unfair Competition Prevention and Trade Secret Protection Act and the Act on Prevention of Divulgence and Protection of Industrial Technology. Seoul expects that the police will track down the former employees who have left the country.
Seoul Estimates Loss Could Have Reached KRW 560 Billion (about USD $500 million)
“We estimate that, if A, B, and C [a reference to the three former employees] were not discovered and charged, it would have lost KRW 560 billion in research and development over a seven-year period, and encroached upon its sales which currently stands at KRW 1 trillion per year.”
Additionally, the Seoul is also pressing charges against the CEO of Everlight Electronics and Everlight itself, which the company claims are both liable for the technology divulgence and have been charged under the Act on Prevention of Divulgence and Protection of Industrial Technology.
“The Police will leverage all legal procedures to track down suspects who leak and divulge technology overseas, as in this case, even when said suspects flee the country. Also, it will cooperate with relevant authorities to enforce measures that will allow the Police to restrict imports/exports and prohibit entry of personnel from foreign corporations that engage in industrial espionage. Moreover, it will continue to work on recovering financial damages caused by the divulgence of technology,” said the Gyeonggi Nambu Provincial Police Agency.