(Reuters) – Chinese wind turbine maker Sinovel Wind Group Co was convicted on Wednesday of U.S. charges that it stole trade secrets from AMSC, causing the Massachusetts-based company to lose more than $800 million.
A federal jury in Madison, Wisconsin, found Sinovel, once AMSC’s largest customer, guilty on all charges it faced, including conspiracy, trade-secret theft and wire fraud, the U.S. Justice Department said.
The conviction exposes Beijing-based Sinovel to hundreds of millions of dollars in potential fines, according to the Justice Department. It is scheduled to be sentenced on June 4.
Sinovel, which saw its shares slide 4 percent in Thursday morning trade on the news, will take legal measures to protect its rights and interests as well as those of its shareholders, it said in a filing to the Shanghai stock exchange.
The stock has lost 46 percent since the charges were brought in June 2013, giving it a market value of about $1.4 billion.
The charges were announced amid heightened concern about Chinese theft of U.S. trade secrets and a legal battle in the Chinese courts pitting Devens, Massachusetts-based AMSC against Sinovel, one of the world’s largest turbine makers.
The conviction also comes as the United States studies possible intellectual property action against China. U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Wednesday China’s tech ambitions represent a direct threat that is being implemented by disrespect for “intellectual property rights, by commercial espionage.”