China says "fictitious" to say it involved in stealing US jet designs

Fri Jan 22, 2016 4:31am EST
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BEIJING Jan 22 (Reuters) - China said on Friday that it was "fictitious" to claim it was involved in stealing blueprints for a U.S. warplane, after Canadian media said two Chinese soldiers were co-conspirators in a scheme to obtain U.S. military secrets.

Canada's Globe and Mail reported this week, citing court documents, that the two soldiers were part of a hacking conspiracy allegedly carried out by a Chinese person living in Canada named Su Bin to get blueprints for F-35s and other U.S. jets.

The U.S. Department of Justice charged Su in 2014 with hacking into the computer systems of Boeing and other companies to obtain data about military projects, according to court filings.

"Chinese government organisations and the military oppose and have never participated in any form of Internet hacking activity," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei told a daily news briefing.

"This so-called thing of Chinese soldiers getting involved in stealing secrets from the United States is totally grasping at shadows and purely fictitious," he said, without elaborating.

China will continue to pay close attention to Su's case, Hong said.

The Globe and Mail said extradition proceedings against Su, to bring him to the United States, were continuing in Canada.

China has consistently denied involvement in any form of hacking, despite frequent accusations by the United States and other Western governments. (Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Ryan Woo)