According to T-Mobile's lawsuit, Huawei employees photographed the robot and attempted to remove one of its parts. The company denies the claims, which have led countries including the US, Australia and Japan to ban or restrict the use of its products.
China's Foreign Ministry said on Thursday that proposed USA legislation targeting Huawei, ZTE and other Chinese telecommunications equipment companies was due to "hysteria", and urged U.S. lawmakers to stop the bills.
Federal prosecutors are reportedly launching an investigation into Huawei over allegations it stole trade secrets from United States companies. The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that Huawei could face criminal charges over the issue. It found that Huawei misappropriated T-Mobile's trade secrets and breached a supply contract between the two companies, saying T-Mobile should get $4.8 million in damages.
The tensions came amid a backdrop of Donald Trump's efforts to get more manufacturing on U.S. soil and apply hefty tariffs on Chinese goods for what the USA president has claimed were unfair trade practices by Beijing.
He told reporters this week that he missed his daughter, Meng Wanzhou - also his company's chief financial officer - who was arrested in Canada last month after being accused of breaking sanctions on Iran.
It was this lawsuit that reportedly started the Justice Department's investigation into the company's alleged theft of trade secrets.
The telecom equipment maker's actions are under scrutiny elsewhere.
"Moving forward, we must combat China's theft of advanced USA technology and their brazen violation of USA law", Van Hollen added.
They worry that, if Americans buy telecommunications equipment from either company, the gear could later be used as a way for the Chinese government to spy on Americans.
Many within the Trump administration have attempted to expose China's intellectual property theft of US businesses, and have called on the president to apply harsher duties on Chinese imports.
The bipartisan authors of the bills include Senator Tom Cotton and Representative Mike Gallagher, both Republicans, and Senator Chris Van Hollen and Representative Ruben Gallego, both Democrats.
Directing the President to impose the same strict penalties originally faced by ZTE on any Chinese telecommunications firm found to be in violation of US export control laws or sanctions.
Prohibiting any executive agency official from modifying any penalty imposed on Chinese telecommunications companies, their agents, or affiliates until the President certifies that the company has not violated United States laws for one year and is cooperating fully with USA investigations.
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