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For Monday, January 24, 2011

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 1:57 a.m. HST, Jan 24, 2011

Seller of U.S. secrets faces life in jail

A former B-2 stealth bomber engineer convicted of selling military secrets to China is due to be sentenced in federal court in Honolulu today.

Noshir Gowadia, 66, faces up to life in prison for his conviction on 14 counts, including conspiracy, communicating national defense information to aid a foreign nation, and violating the arms export control act.

Chief U.S. District Judge Susan Oki Mollway is due to issue her sentence after listening to arguments from the prosecution and defense. Gowadia, who has been in custody without bail since his 2005 arrest, is also expected to have an opportunity to make a statement.

A federal jury found Gowadia guilty in August after deliberating for six days.

Prosecutors said Gowadia helped China design a stealth cruise missile to get money to pay the $15,000-a-month mortgage on his multimillion-dollar home overlooking the ocean in Haiku, Maui. They said he pocketed at least $110,000 from the sale of military secrets.

The sentencing comes just weeks after China conducted a test flight of its new J-20 stealth fighter during a visit to Beijing by U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

The Jan. 11 flight was held at an airfield in Chengdu, where prosecutors say Gowadia delivered an oral presentation on classified stealth technology in 2003.

Scam artist to be sentenced today

A Florida man who pleaded guilty to federal charges of bilking four Hawaii investors out of $250,000 and scores of others in a Ponzi scheme is set to be sentenced.

Patrick Rakotonanahary of Punta Gorda, Fla., will go before U.S. District Judge J. Michael Seabright at 1:30 p.m. today.

Victims may provide statements to the court on the impact of Rakotonanahary's actions.

Rakotonanahary was president and CEO of Virginia-based Cyber Market Group LLC.

Prosecutors say his clients were told their money would be invested in foreign currency markets, but he actually lost money on the investments and spent most of the remainder for personal benefit.

They say the scheme took in more than $10 million.

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