Rio Tinto employees’ arrests an isolated case: Chinese official

BEIJING - The arrest of four Rio Tinto employees on charges of stealing commercial secrets will not and should not hurt trade and economic ties between China and Australia, Vice Minister of Commerce Fu Ziying said Wednesday.

He was speaking after China’s Supreme People’s Procuratorate Tuesday announced the arrest of four employees of the Anglo-Australian mining giant Rio Tinto on charges of stealing commercial secrets and bribery.

The four arrested employees were Stern Hu, an Australian citizen of Chinese origin, and three Chinese - Liu Caikui, Ge Minqiang and Wang Yong - who worked in the company’s Shanghai office when they were detained July 5.

“This is an isolated judicial case,” Fu said at a press conference.

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