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Prosecutors in the United States recommend that the case against an MIT professor for China connections be dropped, according to a source

Prosecutors in the United States recommend that the case against an MIT professor for China connections be dropped, according to a source

Prosecutors have recommended that the United States' Justice Department reduce charges against a Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor accused of concealing his interests in China when searching for federal grants, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Gang Chen, a Chinese mechanical engineer and nanotechnologist, was resigned by federal prosecution in Boston. It was the latest setback for a crackdown on Chinese influence in US research.

The defendant has called the dismissal of the case in recent weeks due to further information, according to the person, adding that the Justice Department has not made a final decision.

When he submitted a grant to the US Department of Energy, he was accused of failing to disclose, among others, that he was an "overseas expert" to the Chinese government.

There was "nothing meaningful" on Chen's application, according to Brian Kelly, a lawyer for Nixon Peabody.

SUSTech, a $25 million collaboration by MIT, is launching a rallie around Chen, claiming that the case against him vilified normal research activities.

Kelly and co-counsel Rob Fisher had no comment on Friday, although the MIT declined to comment. Wyn Hornbuckle, a spokesperson for the Justice Department, had no comment on Chen's case.

The Wall Street Journal reported the first recommendation.

Chen was charged with murder in January 2021 in the wake of Donald Trump's "China Initiative," which was initiated during Trump's administration in order to combat suspected economic espionage and research theft.

Charles Lieber, a Harvard professor, is believed to have made a complaint about his affiliation to a China-run recruitment program.

Despite the Harvard win, several other cases have been dismissed.

A Tennessee professor was acquitted last year by a judge following a mistrial, and prosecutors have dropped charges against six other researchers.

President Joe Biden's administration has kept the initiative in progress, though Hornbuckle said the Justice Department is reviewing its approach, which should be completed in the next weeks.

Rachael Rollins, a newly appointed US attorney in Massachusetts, would not discuss whether prosecutors should stop bringing China Initiative cases.

"The government will always look to see whether we can prove our case at various points," she said.

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