(CNN) -- A Chinese-born engineer who conspired to export U.S. military technology to China was sentenced Monday to 24 years and 4 months in federal prison.
Chi Mak, a 65-year-old naturalized U.S. citizen living in Downey, California, was found guilty of having orchestrated the conspiracy to obtain naval technology and to illegally export the material to China, the Department of Justice said in a news release. Mak worked for defense contractor Power Paragon,
U.S. District Judge Cormac J. Carney handed down the sentence and imposed a $50,000 fine.
"We will never know the full extent of the damage that Mr. Mak has done to our national security," Carney wrote in a "Statement of Reasons" filed with the sentence. "A high-end ... sentence will provide a strong deterrent to the PRC (People's Republic of China) not to send its agents here to steal American military secrets."
Last May, a federal jury found Mak guilty of conspiracy, two counts of attempting to violate export control laws, failing to register as an agent of a foreign government and making false statements to federal investigators.
The FBI and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service determined that co-conspirators gave Mak lists of information they were seeking, including information about nuclear-powered submarines.
The statement said that a CD-ROM containing such information was found in Mak's luggage in October 2005 as he and his wife were preparing to get on a flight from Los Angeles to China.
Four co-conspirators have pleaded guilty. E-mail to a friend