October 11th, 2011

Court orders prison, big fine in Hungarian-Russian industrial espionage case

A court on Monday ruled that two former managers of a Hungarian clinical diagnostic manufacturer accused of industrial espionage should receive one- and two-year prison sentences, respectively, and pay a total fine of 3.3 billion forints (EUR 11m).

The two managers, who deny the charges, had worked for Hungarian clinical diagnostic firm Diagon Kft before moving to a rival company, Diachem Kft. The prosecutor charged the two former managers with copying more than 11,000 items, including patented information on industrial secrets and technology. After their move to Diachem, they tried to hand over the information to the Russian competitor.

The first suspect, Sandor Harmath, was arrested at Liszt Ferenc international airport in May this year as he was leaving for Russia carrying a laptop that included Diagon’s industrial secrets.

Harmath, as well as the second suspect Lajos Torma and the third suspect, Diachem leader Zsolt Pallai, denied charges during the investigation.

The Budapest metropolitan court’s preliminary ruling can be appealed.


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