Harvard university professor Charles Lieber is surrounding by reporters as he leaves the Moakley federal Courthouse in Boston, Jan. 30, 2020.

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Forty academics have actually signed a letter in assistance of a Harvard college professor being prosecuted by the U.S. Government on charges he lied around his connections with the Chinese government.

Seven Nobel compensation winners are among the dozens of researchers asking why the college is not defending Charles Lieber versus the charges.

“Professor Lieber is one of the an excellent scientists that his generation,” the letter reads.

“In the surname of combating financial espionage, the department of Justice has actually increasingly scrutinized members of the academic community. Number of of its investigate reflect a basic misunderstanding of modern-day science, in which open-source techniques make discoveries obtainable to all.”

Lieber, the previous chair the Harvard chemistry and also chemical biologic department, and considered a pioneer in nanotechnology, to be charged in January 2020 and indicted in July for allegedly lying around research capital while participating in China"s Thousand talent Program, the U.S. Room of justice (DOJ) claimed last year.


He is accused of lying to federal authorities in 2018 and also 2019 around his authorized in the program, a recruitment plan designed to tempt high-level scientists to advance the China modern technology industry, and also his affiliation through the Wuhan university of an innovation (WUT).

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"Under the regards to Lieber"s three-year contract, WUT allegedly paid Lieber a value of approximately $50,000 USD per month, living prices of up to 1 million Chinese Yuan (approximately $158,000 USD at the time) and also awarded him an ext than $1.5 million to create a research lab in ~ WUT," DOJ said in a release.

Lieber faces up to five years in prison, 3 years of managed release and also a good of $250,000.

“Despite his stand in the scientific community — or perhaps due to the fact that of that — that has become the target of a tragically misguided government campaign that is discouraging U.S. Scientists from collaborating through peers in various other countries, an especially China,” the letter sustaining Lieber states. “In so doing, the is threatening not just the joined States’ position as a civilization leader in academic research, yet science itself.”

In January, dozens of researchers signed a similar letter in assistance of Massachusetts academy of an innovation professor gang Chen, who was indicted on similar charges, specifically failing come disclose ties with China.

“We room troubled the the complaint against Professor Chen vilifies what have to be taken into consideration normal academic and study activities, including fostering MIT’s mission of worldwide education,” wrote the researchers in a petition top top Change.org, which has actually garnered over 1,000 signatures of support.

“The USA’s biggest asset for fostering innovation and also attracting the brightest minds is the academic freedom and also openness of American science praised throughout the world.... The persecution or burdening of researchers for their interactions and also collaborations will come at a good cost the lost ingenuity and decline of our global leadership in science and also technology,” the petition states.

Lieber has filed suit versus Harvard University, speak it should pay because that his legitimate expenses. The university has completed that it is not responsible because that those costs.