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US firm accused of supporting India weapons programmes

US firm accused of supporting India weapons programmes
AP
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First Published: Tue, Apr 03 2007. 03 38 PM IST
Updated: Tue, Apr 03 2007. 03 38 PM IST
Washington: The chief executive of an electronics supply company is charged with shipping closely guarded US computer technology to India for use in missiles and other weapon systems.
Working with Indian government officials, Cirrus Electronics founder Parthasarathy Sudarshan ordered computer equipment from US manufacturers using falsified documents about their destination, federal prosecutors said. The parts were allegedly shipped to India through Cirrus offices in South Carolina and Singapore.
Prosecutors say that between 2003 and 2006, Sudarshan was buying the equipment for three Indian government agencies: the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, which researches spacecraft and ballistic missiles, Bharat Dynamics Ltd, a key agency in the nation’s guided missile programme, and the Aeronautical Development Establishment, which is developing the Tejas combat jet. The US Commerce Department restricts exports to these agencies.
The equipment included heat-resistant memory chips, microprocessors, capacitors and semiconductors used in missile guidance systems and firing systems, according to a federal indictment unsealed recently.
Sudarshan was arrested 23 March and was ordered held without bail until his court appearance on 3 April. Also arrested was Mythili Gopa, the company’s international sales manager, who opened the Cirrus office in South Carolina in 2003. She was released and is due in court 17 April.
They are charged with export violations, international arms trafficking, being agents for a foreign government and conspiracy.
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First Published: Tue, Apr 03 2007. 03 38 PM IST
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