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Former UA professor pleads innocent

by Jaime Adame | August 1, 2020 at 3:20 a.m.

FAYETTEVILLE -- Simon Ang, a former University of Arkansas, Fayetteville engineering professor, pleaded innocent Thursday to multiple counts of wire fraud and making a false statement on a passport application.

Ang is accused of failing to disclose participation in Chinese government "talent plans" and ties to Chinese companies when applying for NASA and U.S. Air Force research grants.

A 44-count indictment filed in U.S. District Court in Fayetteville states Ang "knowingly made materially fraudulent misrepresentations and omissions" on a 2016 NASA research grant application. The fraud led to wire transfers to UA accounts, the court document states.

Ang was arrested May 8 and released May 29 on a $200,000 bond to home detention. After his arrest, UA suspended him without pay and on July 2 terminated him from his job, a university spokesman has said.

Ang joined UA's faculty in 1988 and was director of the university's High Density Electronics Center, or HiDEC.

Drew Ledbetter, a Fayetteville attorney representing Ang, has not responded to emails and phone messsages seeking comment on the indictment.

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