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The head of Harvard University’s chemistry department was charged on Tuesday with attempting to conceal his involvement in a Chinese government program to bring scientists to China, an escalation of a crackdown by U.S. authorities on what they perceive as a campaign to steal ideas born in American universities and medical centers.

In a criminal complaint unsealed on Tuesday, Charles Lieber — a leading nanoelectronics researcher and the chair of Harvard’s department of chemistry and chemical biology — is accused of making false statements to the U.S. Department of Defense about his role in China’s Thousand Talents program, a recruitment initiative that offers payments and perks to scientists trained overseas to convince them to come to China. Lieber was arrested on Tuesday, according to a court filing.

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  • Very sad and disgusting behavior. Harsh penalties should be invoked. Clawbacks of grants and paychecks. No paid absence, loss of citizenship after lengthy prison time. Place Harvard on zero grant for 5 years… More

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