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Throw The Book At Him

Wed, 10/21/2009 - 4:52am
by David Mantey, Editor, PD&D

Beijing Autos (BA) says it doesn’t know anything about the ex-engineer who photocopied thousands of documents and coincidentally took an overseas vacation to shop his merchandise to the highest bidder.

Yeah, and I denied it when the side view mirror disappeared out of my father’s truck and a bird was left to take the rap. Poor bird, it shouldn’t have been flying there.

Now I’m sure that BA “relies on its own self-developed designs and technology,” but if someone comes to you with the answers to the test, you’re telling me that you’re going to turn them away at the door?

I found the company's stand on the trial particularly interesting. The company stated that while they had absolutely no involvement, they would be monitoring the case. I suppose the statement could’ve been lost in translation.

Maybe they were trying to suggest that while they had nothing to do with the scandal; this bit of white collar criminal gossip was too juicy to pass up and they’d be glued to the TV watching the trial as did all of America as many hoped for Falcon’s safe return. Somehow the drama seems equally staged. I wasn't watching, I was reading updates on Twitter and CNN and didn't know how a bird with such sharp talons could be trapped inside a weather balloon. I didn't see the allure.

As in any scenario when dominos begin to fall, those waiting on the perimeter eye the flow and pray to see a lone snake eyed piece standing tall before the ripple reaches them.

Of course, it’s all speculation; BA was never accused of any wrongdoing. Then again, I try to think of how many trials I’ve monitored closely in the last five years … I’m drawing a blank, but I did realize that I can go back that far without having one with direct implications, celebratory self high-five.

Think twice before you move forward with corporate espionage. Violent crimes are one thing, but mess with someone’s bottom line and they throw the book at you.

Of course, as I write this, I’m ripping music, cloning my desktop and leering, through the darkened rooms of our office for documents to scan, save and sell to the highest bidder.

Who wants the folder with abandoned columns? Anyone? I’ll give you a great rate on archived notes and interviews. Isn’t that how they pinched Nixon? Granted, these may not be anything to compare to The Clinton Tapes, but I have a hot unreleased Q&A in which a well-known CEO discusses how his company is the greatest company in the world.

The company not only manufactures robust, rugged and innovative products – a juicy quote I noticed during transcription – but they also do proprietary work that no one else on the planet is privy too. No takers? I’ll keep shopping.

Maybe I just don’t understand the allure of the white-collar crime. I get the excitement. I understand why an engineer copied thousands of electronic documents and stole trade secrets before quitting Ford Motor Co. for a new job in China.

Be it nationalism or contempt, all you need to do is witness or participate in a bitter divorce and you understand the lengths people will go to in order to, um, tarnish one another. I’m watching the diction; I don’t want to offend anyone with one of the seven words you can’t say in grade school.

In Xiang Dong Yu’s case (a.k.a. Mike Yu), he even made it to China with his loot, landed a job with a competitor, and then was foolish enough to come back and get pinched at O’Hare. (Read: China-bound ex-Ford engineer charged with stealing.)

Smart criminals, the recession is rife with them. Whom am I kidding? We have plenty of people committing everything from petty theft to grandiose pyramid schemes during healthy times as well.

Perhaps I’m more jaded than usual. Last month, some victim of inbreeding smashed in my back door and rifled through my belongs looking for anything of value. Hey buddy, next time you plan to rob someone, make sure they don’t shop at the Frugal Muse or Goodwill. And I have a feeling local law enforcement isn’t exactly in hot pursuit. Especially given the, “Eh, it was probably just some kids looking for a cheap thrill,” I was given from the Fargo understudy. I have a feeling that they’re not exactly pressing on criminal informants to track down the digital camcorder.

Xiang Dong — err, I mean Mike — enjoy your 10 years. You sold out an American staple, so prepare for a decade of government-prepared meals.

As for me, I’m going back on Craigslist to see if anyone is hawking an antique jewelry box or the camera.

Got a line on the guy (or gal) who ruined my weekend and pilfered through the whites? Email me: david.mantey@advantagemedia.com.

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