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ZTE’s Court-Appointed Monitorship Comes to a Close

The largest criminal monitorship in U.S. history has ended. On March 22, 2022 a U.S. judge ruled that Chinese telecommunications giant ZTE Corporation had completed the terms of its five-year probation, which began in 2017 following ZTE’s criminal plea agreement for its role in exporting controlled U.S. products to embargoed countries.

The resolution was up in the air as late as March 14, when ZTE returned to court for a hearing on whether alleged visa fraud by a former research director had violated the Chinese company’s probation. In this hearing, which came just one week before the stipulated end date of the original five-year corporate compliance monitorship, the judge found that the alleged conduct in the visa fraud case did not violate the terms of ZTE’s probation. Nevertheless, he “encouraged the government to pursue any reasonable charges and criminal or civil penalties against the company, especially for export compliance violations. Read more…