A Chinese Nasa contractor who was accused of espionage after FBI agents arrested him at Dulles International Airport has been exonerated.
But the man has also been embarrassed - after it emerged his work laptop was not full of government secrets, but porn and pirated movies.
Bo Jiang is a Chinese national with a doctorate in electrical engineering. He had been working in the USA at Nasa's Langely Research Center in Hampton, Virginia - reportedly on so-called "high-tech imagining technology".
But when he boarded a plane back to China with a one-way ticket, a Nasa-owned laptop and external hard drives, it was feared that Jiang might have been attempting to return with potentially dangerous information.
One US congressman said that if his work had been leaked it "potentially could be a direct threat to our country".
Representative Frank Wolf added that "the Chinese have the most comprehensive spying program in Washington that has ever been".
But now it has emerged that not only did Jiang have no clearance for sensitive projects at Langley, he had not tried to bring anything back other than a laptop load with porn and pirated films.
It turns out the 31-year-old researcher had lost his job and his visa had expired - hence why he was returning home.
"None of the computer media that Jiang attempted to bring to the PRC [People's Republic of China] on March 16, 2013, contained classified information, export controlled information, or NASA proprietary information," said a statement of facts issued in a federal court in Virginia.
He will now plead guilty to a charge of misdemeanour for violating agency computer security rules, but there is no word of anything more serious.
Nasa had previously said it took "any allegation of a security violation very seriously".Suggest a correction