Pratt & Whitney Canada Corp, a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp (UTC), was yesterday slapped with more than $75 million in fines by the US government for violating the country's arms control laws and helping China develop its first modern military attack helicopter.
Pratt & Whitney Canada and another unit of UTC pleaded guilty of illegally supplying China with software, knowing fully well that the export restricted technology will enable China to develop a military attack helicopter.
The US has banned the export of defense equipment and military technology to China since 1989.
China developed an attack military helicopter with Pratt & Whitney engines, which are also used on commercial helicopters, but the company, lured by further orders worth over $2 billion for supplying civilian engines, had in 2002 - 2003, outfitted them with engine-control software modified for military use.
The software was made by another UTC subsidiary, Hamilton Sundstrand, which had developed six versions of that software.
China went on to produce the Z-10 helicopter and initial batches were delivered to the People's Liberation Army of China in 2009 and 2010, the US Justice Department said in a statement.
"PWC exported controlled US technology to China, knowing it would be used in the development of a military attack helicopter in violation of the US arms embargo with China," said David Fein, US attorney for Connecticut.