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Professor cleared of inappropriate relationship with China offered position back at University of Tennessee

A professor cleared of any inappropriate relationship with China has been offered his position back at the University of Tennessee.

Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor John Zomchick said in a letter Thursday Anming Hu could have his job back with tenure an as engineering professor, the Knoxville News Sentinel reported, according to the AP.

He was also given support for his work visa, back pay, payment for an immigration attorney and $200,000 over the next three years to get his research started again. 

Hu was arrested last year for wire fraud and false statements but was acquitted by a judge in September. 

Prosecutors went after Hu for not saying he worked part-time at a Chinese university in an application for a NASA-funded research grant.

The judge said that Hu never had anyone from China work on the project, nor did he ever take money from China. The judge also said that NASA's funding restrictions were unclear. 

An FBI agent admitted during the trial to falsely telling the university Hu was a Chinese military operative with no evidence.

The FBI agent never returned to the school to tell the administration that the statement wasn't true.

Hu's arrest was part of a broader goal by the Department of Justice to go after Chinese spies on college campuses. Hu was one of the first to go to trial under the initiative. 

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